The Italian Ice cream, Vanilla with Chocolate Chunks

Growing up in a sea front village in Southern Italy, summer means warm nights strolling through the village, eating gelato. Gelato for us is more than a simple treat, it is also a social gathering and you would meet up with your friends and go for an ice cream. Now that I live in London, I miss all this. I miss the after dinner walks with my friends or my family, stopping by the usual Gelateria and slowly walking in the street to the belvedere. I miss looking at the sea with an ice cream, and meeting the people I know to talk about life in general. For Italians, gelato is a way of fighting time, you don’t devour the ice cream you gently relish it.

A couple of days ago, I received a Springlane ice cream machine they are launching in UK to test. I was super happy! I love ice cream, but I rarely manage to find in London real Italian ice cream, what we call gelato, which is smoother and denser than normal ice cream. In two days I tried three different recipes. I went a little crazy, but I just love the idea of trying my mum’s recipes from when we were kids (we had a small gelato machine) and to finally eat an Italian ice cream here in London comfortably on my sofa!

 Springlane Emma - Ice cream machine

Springlane Emma - Ice cream machine

Serves: 3-4 people

Prep: 15min + allow 20min to cool in the fridge

Cooking: 60min (depending on your ice cream machine)

Mamma Flora’s Tip: For the best ice cream, prepare it a few hours before serving.


  • 250g milk

  • 150g cream

  • 100g sugar

  • 50gr dark chocolate

  • 3 yolks

  • 1 vanilla pod

  • A drop of vanilla extract

milk-vanilla pod-eggs


  • Ice cream machine - I used Springlane Emma, which I found very easy and straightforward to use, and their booklet about ice cream recipes is very useful too

  • 2 bowls

  • 1 pot

  • A whisker


  • Split the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape the seeds out with the point of the knife and tip into a pan

vanilla pod
  • In the same pan add the milk and bring to boil (I usually add also the pod in the milk as it’s very fragrant)
  • Then remove from heat and leave it to cool. (Take out the vanilla pod)

  • In a bowl, whisk the yolks and the sugar until it becomes a smooth cream. Add the cream and the cold milk and whisk again until smooth

  • Place the bowl in the fridge for 20min. The mixture then is ready to become ice cream

  • Follow the instructions on your ice machine and voila, a perfect Gelato!

vanilla ice cream
  • Add chocolate chunks when serving
  • I suggest you eat it straight away, or better if you place it in the freezer for 2 hours before serving

chocolate ice cream machine
chocolate ice cream bucket
ice cream friends

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