Author Notes: I'm obsessed with my ice cream maker. When I saw the challenge for Italian desserts, all I could think was gelato... and since ricotta, nuts, and honey go perfect together, I thought combining them in a gelato would delicious! The ricotta is mild and pairs great with the sweet, orange flavored honey and crunchy almonds. Even a room full of 20-something guys didn't blink at the mention of cheese-ice cream, and practically inhaled it! *Read steps ahead, requires chilling ahead of time, and requires an ice cream maker.* - Loves Food Loves to Eat
- 1.5 cups water
- 1.5 cups honey
- peel of one orange (whole, not zested), plus a squeeze of the juice
- 4 cups fresh ricotta
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1.5-2 cups roasted sliced almonds
- Combine honey, water, orange peel, and a quick squeeze of fresh orange juice in a saucepan and bring to a boil to disolve honey, whisking. Turn down heat to low, and let simmer for 3 minutes. Chill 1.5 cups, keep remaining in saucepan.
- Add nuts to saucepan and stir to coat. Add more honey if needed. Spread honeyed almonds on wax coated sheet pan, and chill.
- Blend ricotta and milk in blender until smooth, slowly add honey mixture until combined and smooth. Transfer to an ice cream maker and process according to the machine's directions. (My maker is 1.5 quart, and this makes 2 batches).
- Either top with honeyed almonds and eat immediately (I actually like the texture when it's just made), or transfer to an airtight container or mold, layer in almonds. Cover and freeze until firm, about 3 hours. Let sit at room temperature for a few minutes before eating.