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Chocolate-espresso sauce drizzled on homemade gelato is the Italian dessert of your dreams

Rowena Dumlao-Giardina resides in Italy, cooking and photographing her family's interesting meals on Apron and Sneakers. After moving to Italy in 1999 from the Philippines, she has traveled extensively around the country and the rest of ...

Savor Italy with homemade vanilla gelato topped by a warm espresso-chocolate sauce

This dessert screams Italy. Espresso and gelato — need I say more?

There are two things that are fundamental in Italy: espresso and gelato. You have to try both when you visit. In fact, the country is dotted with bars (for the coffee) and gelataria (for the gelato) on every corner. Try to count them... You'll give up because there are so many. But they are also decisively good.

Savor Italy with homemade vanilla gelato topped by a warm espresso-chocolate sauce

In this dessert, I put together gelato and espresso in one delicious bowl. You will definitely enjoy both Italian staples in one spoonful. And you might be surprised how easy gelato is to make at home.

Warm espresso-chocolate sauce on homemade vanilla gelato recipe

Serves 4


  • Vanilla gelato (see recipe below)
  • Warm espresso-chocolate sauce (see recipe below)
  • 4 tablespoons crushed pistachios


  1. In individual serving bowls, scoop some vanilla gelato.
  2. Pour some warm espresso-chocolate sauce onto the gelato.
  3. Sprinkle with the pistachios.
  4. Serve immediately.

Vanilla gelato recipe

Serves 4


  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 egg yolks


  1. Slice the vanilla pod in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds with the tip of a knife. Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan over low-medium heat, bring the milk and cream almost to a boil (ensure the mixture doesn't boil), and then add the vanilla seeds. Let it cool.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix together the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture becomes creamy.
  4. Gradually pour the milk-and-cream mixture into the egg mixture while whisking with a hand whisk.
  5. Let the mixture cool completely in the refrigerator, and then transfer it to the ice cream maker.
  6. Follow the instructions of the ice cream maker to make the gelato.

Espresso-chocolate sauce recipe

Serves 4


  • 1/4 cup freshly made espresso
  • 1-2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 ounces chocolate block, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon soft butter


  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, add water to half full, and bring it to a boil.
  2. Place a smaller saucepan into the saucepan with the water.
  3. Melt the chocolate in the smaller saucepan, and then add the espresso, sugar and butter.
  4. Mix well.

More coffee desserts

Irish coffee cream fudge recipe
Gobble latte coffee spoons recipe

Blackberry almond coffeecake recipe

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