Toasting the pistachios in the oven brings out their nutty flavor. Be sure to watch them carefully so they don’t burn.
- 1 cup whole unsalted pistachios
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
Preheat an oven to 350°F.
Place the pistachios on a baking sheet and bake, stirring once, until toasted, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Put the pistachios in a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Set aside.
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the milk, cream and vanilla and heat until the mixture just starts to simmer. Remove from the heat.
In a large heatproof bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until pale and thick. Add 1 cup of the hot milk mixture to the yolk mixture and whisk to combine. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and set over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or spatula, until the custard thickens and a finger drawn across the back of the spoon leaves a path, about 5 minutes; do not allow the custard to boil.
Pour the custard into a heatproof bowl and stir in the ground pistachios. Nestle the bowl in a larger one filled halfway with ice water and cool the custard, stirring occasionally. Cover the custard and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 4 hours or up to overnight.
Pour the chilled custard through a fine-mesh sieve set over a clean bowl, using the back of a wooden spoon to push down on the pistachios and extract any liquid; discard the pistachios.
Transfer the custard to a Breville smart scoop ice cream compressor and freeze on the “gelato” setting according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the desired consistency is reached. If using another type of ice cream maker, freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer the gelato to a freezer-safe container for up to 1 week. Makes about 1 pint.