|Catherine de’ Medic|
Perhaps many of you did not know it, but gelato has a long and distinguished past dating all the way back to ancient Romans and Egyptians. They would make frozen treats from snow and ice brought down from nearby mountaintops
and store them underground.
In the 16th century, gelato re-emerged in the courts of Catherine de’ Medici. A Florentine cook by the name of Bernardo Buontalenti introduced his recipe and refrigeration techniques to court, and Catherine de’ Medici, in turn, brought the innovation to France. It is Buontalenti, who is credited as being the founder of not only gelato but also ice cream.
With the 4th of July approaching, it has me thinking about gelato’s place in America. Everyone knows the expression, “as American as apple pie and ice cream.” What you may not know is that gelato arrived here in America first. Giovanni Basiolo brought gelato from Italy to New York in 1770. Gelato eventually evolved into ice cream, and the first ice cream parlor opened in 1776 in New York.
While gelato and ice cream have some similarities, there are key differences that you should know. While a product legally must contain at least 10% butterfat to be considered ice cream, gelato contains less fat –
between 5 and 7%. Gelato is also much denser than ice cream because less air is whipped into the mixture. Less fat and less air means a creamier dessert with more intense flavors. Less fat also means less guilt with every bite.
So, we here at Pino Gelato are celebrating this 4th of July, and birth of our great nation, by having a slice of apple pie and…gelato! We hope you will consider doing the same.