This breathtakingly beautiful blueberry gelato is a silky-smooth treat that highlights the intense taste of the bright blue late-summer berry!
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The first time I traveled to Rome, the thing I was most excited about tasting was gelato. I’d heard so much about it and was extremely curious to finally understand what the fuss was about. I made sure to go to a renowned gelateria for my first taste: I wanted the experience to be the barometer for my future gelato tasting and making endeavors. The array of flavors was astounding: I was paralyzed! Yet I had to pick flavors NOW—the line was long and the woman serving the gelato was looking at me sharply.
If you’ve ever been to Italy, you know you can’t linger when placing an order, whether it’s at the coffeeshop, the bakery, or the gelateria. You make up your mind before you enter the shop, then you order with confidence. But I hadn’t received that memo before I went to Rome, and now I was being scolded by the gelato lady, who was threatening to move on to the next customers—so I looked at the two flavors that were in front of me and blurted “Fragola e mirtilli!” Strawberry and blueberry gelati it would be.
Of course, I fell in love with gelato right then and there—and the rest is history. Seven years later, I’ve churned countless batches of gelato at home, written extensively about gelato making, and even filmed a video class about it. When I make gelato at home I like to alternate between family favorites and new flavors, but making blueberry gelato has become an annual late-summer tradition. I’ve made a habit of always using wild blueberries, which are available this time of year, because their concentrated color and flavor translates wonderfully in gelato.
You can use whichever blueberry variety you can get your hands on—even frozen ones. I have to say the intensity of the flavor in this gelato is especially stunning if you use wild blueberries: their petite size delivers an incredible aroma and a bright purple color to the frozen treat.
If you start with frozen fruit, you’ll need to let them macerate for longer at room temperature so they thaw completely, absorb that sugar, and release their juice. You may also have to simmer the fruit longer to make sure any excess water evaporates and you’re left with a flavorful, concentrated puree.
As with all gelato flavors, you should start the blueberry gelato-making process a day in advance. Both the blueberry puree and the gelato base need to be refrigerated to cool completely before being combined and churned together. Gelato custard must be very cold before churning: this will produce the smoothest, silkiest texture.
Always remember to bring gelato to room temperature 15 to 20 minutes before serving. That will not only make it easier to serve—gelato’s lower fat content means it freezes rock hard—but also soften it to a consistency closer to what you would enjoy at a gelati bar, waking up the flavors and giving it the luxurious texture that is so easy to fall in love with.
Never made gelato before? Curious about what makes gelato different from ice cream? Check out my colorful masterclass! In it, you’ll find out what makes gelato different from ice cream, how to make a versatile gelato base you can turn into various flavors, and all my secrets and tips to churn and serve outstanding gelato. I even share how to make dairy-free, vegan gelato! In short, it’s a very thorough, colorful class that will quickly turn you into a gelato master.
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Love gelato? Then you need to give these irresistibly fruity, homemade gelato recipes a try.
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