15-24: Monterosso Ice Cream

Because it takes me a while to get around to writing these, it often works out that I’m writing about winter recipes in the summer and vice versa. Sticking with that theme, I present to you (in December) 15-24: Monterosso Ice Cream. Hey, at least it’ll be timely if you’re in the Southern hemisphere. I bet you guys are tired of everything being geared towards the Northern hemisphere anyway, so this one’s for you.

In case you were wondering, Monterosso is a coastal village in Italy, and it looks very nice. Totally giving me White Lotus S2 vibes. I can’t seem to find anything that associates a certain type of dessert or ice cream with the town, but I did find some recommendations for gelato in case you’re ever in the area.

I wonder why they associated kiwi and pineapple with Italian ice cream. I feel like this would have been even better with a coffee layer, a chocolate layer, something more…Italian. There’s a TIP to omit the cake layer if you choose, but then it feels like it’s just a bowl of different (questionably-made) ice creams layered together.

Ingredients. I’m going to attempt to use non-dairy whipping cream for this, and I have a boxed cake for my cake layer. I still have that bottle of (Italian) cherry liqueur from 15-10: Frozen Raspberry Desserts and 16-26: Elegant Almond Cake, so it will get used here as well.

Not pictured: the other store-bought non-dairy whipped cream that I had to use to actually cover the outside. You’ll see it in a bit.

I made two layers of cake, with plans to cut each of those layers in half again to make them even thinner. Once I do that, I’ll cut them into wedges.

Separating eggs. Whites go into the mixing bowl to make meringue, and I’ll hold the yolks to the side for the ice cream. Egg shells will go into my garden compost bin.

Those are some very stiff peaks.

Folding the meringue into the egg yolk mixture.

I used a little colander to drain my pineapple bits. If you don’t want to use liqueur and you don’t have fruit juice on hand for Step 4, you can use the juice from the pineapple can.

Breaking down the kiwis and strawberries. I’ll save that little pile of kiwi skins for my compost pile as well.

PRO TIP: Don’t mash/blend/use up all your fruit–save some whole pieces to decorate with at the end.

It’s advised to mash the fruit, but a quick trip through a mini-food processor works too.

I put the fruit into three separate bowls and even had three (MATCHING) spatulas to mix them up with. I don’t know how people function with only one spatula in their kitchen.

Sliced the now-cooled cake layers in half (the chef’s knife in the pic is what I’m going to use to cut them into wedges–use a long serrated knife to cut the cake layers in half).

Cake layers are now cake wedges.

So far it seems like it’s working, but the second layer up is going to be a bit more difficult to negotiate. Notice how I wrapped the bowl in plastic wrap first–HIGHLY advised if you want to easily get this thing out in one piece once frozen.

And it started so well. Hopefully the whipped cream on the outside will cover up the worst of it. Strawberry ice cream is in–now I wait to do the kiwi layer.

The ice cream is starting to get a bit…flaky. This would have worked better with an actual ice cream maker, but we’re committed now.

I spackled in the kiwi ice cream (because that’s the consistency at this point) and started work on the pineapple ice cream. Both kiwi and pineapple have enzymes in them that can mess with other ingredients by breaking down proteins–do you think that might be what’s happening here?

Final layer is in. I put another layer of plastic wrap on it, stuck it in the freezer, and hoped for the best.

Upon removal from the fridge and its bowl. Told you it makes it easier if you have the plastic wrap on it.

After plastic extraction and being flipped onto a plate. This square plate is not going to play well with this round cake, especially once I start to try to frost it.

Remember I mentioned that there was other non-dairy whipping cream I had to cover the cake? Here it is, complete with icing spatula (YES, another spatula). Also, I dug out a round plate for this, since the square one was giving me stability issues.

The non-dairy topping did pretty well, and I think I’ve covered up the worst of my cake problems. Now to decorate it with some of the fruit I held to the side.

As I mentioned up above, I saved some of my fruit pieces and used them to decorate the outside of the cake. The mess on top is an attempt at a flower.

Gotta see a cross-section of it–here’s how the inside held up.

And here’s the slice I took out of it. It wasn’t terrible, and we actually finished it over the course of the week, a few slices at a time. If I did it again, I’d use an ice cream maker, and perhaps some different fruit/flavors for the ice cream itself. The concept itself is intriguing though.

Grade: B+