Amaretto soaked fig, orange and ricotta cassata gelato with espresso syrup
Traditionally the Sicilian Cassata is made from sponge, ricotta and lashings of marzipan and a very sweet icing. Although I love the traditional cassata, I also love gelato and figured that the meeting of these two recipes could only mean sheer pleasure for the mouth. If you are a real foodie and completely against store bought, you can make your own vanilla and coffee gelato. As this is a dessert that I like to throw together when I know I have people coming over, I tend to use the best quality vanilla bean and espresso gelato I can find. I have used figs and candied orange, although if you have a preference for any other flavours, then go right ahead and adjust the recipe to suit your favourite ice cream and flavours.
- 3.5lt stainless steel, ceramic or plastic dome bowl
- 150g dried plump figs
- 100g good quality candied orange slices
- 60ml amaretto liquor
- 100g amaretti biscuits
- 700g fresh ricotta
- 1/3 cup raw castor sugar
- 1 kg best quality vanilla ice cream
- 750g coffee ice cream
For the Espresso Syrup
- 2 cups caster sugar
- 1/2 cup water
1 cup expresso coffee
60ml amaretto liquor
Line the inside of the bowl with plastic wrap until it is completely covered. Place the bowl in the freezer half an hour before filling it with the ice cream.
Allow the vanilla and coffee ice cream to defrost for 10 minutes or until it can be easily spooned into the mould, take the mould out of the freezer and smooth in the vanilla ice cream evenly to cover the interior of the mould, sprinkle all of the amaretti biscuits over the vanilla ice cream, place the mould back in the freezer for a further 15-20 minutes
Place all ingredients except the amaretto, into a small pot over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, bring to the boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Continue to simmer until syrup reduces by half and thickens to coat the back of a spoon, add the amaretto.