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Zeppole (Italian Doughnuts) with Olive Oil Gelato and Strawberries
By Chef Holly Smith



1/2 cup Milk
2/3 ounce Yeast
1 cup All-Purpose Flour
4 tablespoons Butter softened
1/3 cup Sugar
2 whole Eggs
1 Egg Yolk
1 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon Salt
Olive Oil for frying
Sugar for dusting
Truffle Salt for dusting


8 Egg Yolks
1 1/2 cups Sugar
2 cups Milk
1 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil (use California Olive Ranch Arbasana Extra Virgin Olive OIl or your favorite)

Strawberry Topping

1 pint Strawberries (depending on your appetite)
4 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
1 teaspoon Cracked Black Peppercorn
1/2 Organic Lemon juice freshly squeezed
1 teaspoon Sugar if desired (if strawberries are sweet - sugar should not be added)



Heat milk just until warm. Add it to the yeast and dissolve. Whisk in the flour until smooth. Put in a warm place and let rise for 10 minutes. In an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar together. Add eggs and yolks one at a time and mix until well incorporated. Sprinkle in flour and salt and mix until it comes together and makes a dough. Then add yeast mixture to bowl and mix on low speed until completely combined. Let rise for 1½ hours. Scrape finished dough out onto heavily floured surface and cut to desired shapes. Let shapes rise for 30 minutes. Heat oil to 350° F. Add shapes to hot olive oil. Fry until golden brown. Immediately toss in sugar and sprinkle very lightly with truffle salt.


First make the custard by whisking yolks and sugar together in a bowl until light in color, then bring the milk to a boil in a saucepan. Temper yolks into milk by slowly whisking about one-quarter of the milk into the bowl of yolks. Slowly pour the mixture back into the remaining hot milk, stirring constantly. Cook mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until it reaches 180° F or until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain through a fine mesh strainer and cool completely. Mix the custard and cream together and churn in a gelato machine. When mixture is three-quarters of the way done churning, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and finish churning.

Strawberry Topping

Combine all ingredients. Macerate (combine with liquid to make soft) berries 15 minutes before serving.

To Serve

Fry zeppole and serve berries over gelato with extra drizzle of sauce.