Italians love their gelato. And they love their espresso. They combine both into an affogato (ah-foe-GOT-toe).
Affogato is a coffee lover’s delight. It’s a scoop (or more) of vanilla gelato, topped with a shot of hot espresso. In Italian, the word means “drowned.” You can drown the gelato further with a flavored syrup or a shot of liqueur.
Depending on how you make it, affogato can be a beverage—think iced espresso with a scoop of gelato—or a dessert.
In this cooking video, Giada Di Laurentiis makes the dessert version. She tops vanilla gelato with homemade sugar syrup flavored with gingerbread spices and hazelnut liqueur, then adds the hot espresso.
Instead of gingerbread-spiced syrup with cinnamon, cloves, ginger and hazelnut liqueur, you can use any favorite spices and/or liqueur—amaretto, chocolate or coffee liqueur, for example.
You can use ready-made syrups—the type served in coffee bars—from producers like DaVinci, Monin, Torani and Sonoma Syrups. If you can’t find them locally, try Amazon.com. It’s far more cost effective, though, to make the syrup from scratch—and much more delicious.
Instead of a syrup with liqueur, you can substitute a shot of hazelnut liqueur, or experiment with other liqueur flavors. Those who don’t like sweet syrup will prefer it, and you’ll save the sugar calories from the syrup.
Instead of vanilla gelato or ice cream, try chocolate or coffee gelato—or a scoop of all three!
What’s the difference between gelato and ice cream? Find out!