Affogati

So, dreaming of Sunday mornings spent sipping cappuccino and weekday afternoon espresso pick-me-ups, you purchased a beautiful espresso machine and gave it a place of prominence atop your counter. Now, two years later, you spend more time dusting it than you do making caffeine drinks of any kind, let alone espresso.  We’ve all done it and I’ve no magic words to prevent it from happening again. What I can do is offer a recipe that just might encourage you to use your espresso machine again. Today’s recipe is affogato, a relatively light dessert that I use to end many a summertime meal.

Actually, the full name of today’s recipe is affogato al caffè, which when translated means “drowned in coffee”. At its most basic, this is a combination of ice cream, espresso, and whipped cream — but who likes basic? I’ve included a couple of variations that may pique your interest and entice you to break out that espresso machine. Oh! And what if you don’t own an espresso machine? Not to worry. You can substitute some strong, black coffee for the espresso.

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Affogati Recipes

a) Affogato al Caffè

Ingredients

  • 4 large scoops premium or home-made vanilla ice cream
  • 4 shots espresso or very strong black coffee
  • freshly whipped cream
  • chocolate shavings (optional)

Directions

  1. Place one scoop of ice cream into each of 4 dessert bowls or large coffee mugs.
  2. Pour a freshly brewed shot of espresso or coffee over each scoop.
  3. Top off with a dollop of whipped cream.
  4. Sprinkle with shaved chocolate, if desired.
  5. Serve immediately.

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b)  Affogato with Almonds (Mandorle)

Ingredients

  • 4 large scoops premium or home-made vanilla ice cream
  • 4 shots espresso or very strong black coffee
  • 2 shots Amaretto Liqueur
  • freshly whipped cream
  • toasted slivered or sliced almonds (optional)
  • chocolate shavings (optional)

Directions

  1. Place one scoop of ice cream into each of 4 dessert bowls or large coffee mugs.
  2. Pour a freshly brewed shot of espresso or coffee over each scoop.
  3. Pour 1/2 shot of Amaretto over each serving.
  4. Top off with a dollop of whipped cream.
  5. Sprinkle with almonds and/or shaved chocolate, if desired.
  6. Serve immediately.

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c) Affogato with Hazelnuts (Nocciola)

Ingredients

  • 4 large scoops premium or home-made vanilla ice cream
  • 4 shots espresso or very strong black coffee
  • 2 shots Frangelico Liqueur
  • freshly whipped cream
  • crushed toasted hazelnuts (optional)
  • chocolate shavings (optional)

Directions

  1. Place one scoop of ice cream into each of 4 dessert bowls or large coffee mugs.
  2. Pour a freshly brewed shot of espresso or coffee over each scoop.
  3. Pour 1/2 shot of Frangelico over each serving.
  4. Top off with a dollop of whipped cream.
  5. Sprinkle with crushed hazelnuts and/or shaved chocolate, if desired.
  6. Serve immediately.

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d) Chocolate Affogato (Cioccolato)

Ingredients

  • 4 large scoops premium or home-made chocolate ice cream
  • 4 shots espresso or very strong black coffee
  • 2 shots Kahlua Liqueur
  • freshly whipped cream
  • 4 tbsp chocolate shavings, + 1 tbsp for garnish

Directions

  1. Place one scoop of ice cream into each of 4 dessert bowls or large coffee mugs.
  2. Pour a freshly brewed shot of espresso or coffee over each scoop.
  3. Sprinkle 1 tbsp of chocolate over each serving.
  4. Pour 1/2 shot of Kahlua over each serving.
  5. Top off with a dollop of whipped cream.
  6. Divide and sprinkle remaining tbsp of shaved chocolate over all 4 servings
  7. Serve immediately.

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Variations

Of course, the liqueur may be omitted from the variations listed-above. On the other hand, you may wish to use Framboise or Chambord liqueurs in addition to, or in place of, the Kahlua in the chocolate affogato recipe. And although fine if served as-is, you may wish to include almond cookies (amaretti) when serving affogato with almonds, or, perhaps some complimentary biscotti, — i.e., hazelnut, chocolate, etc. — with the appropriate variation. And if those aren’t enough choices, you can try adding a sprinkling of cinnamon or nutmeg to the whipping cream.

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24 thoughts on “Affogati

  1. John, I will take one of each over the next week! My Moka is on my counter and used twice a day! I like to serve these in place of desserts for after dinner, like you mentioned with a biscotti or amaretto cookie. I’m going to try out each variation you posted!

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    • You’re right, David, they are nice and light — perfect for any hot Summer evening when a traditional dessert would leave one feeling stuffed. I only gave a few variations but the possibilities are endless, limited only by what’s in your liquor cabinet.

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    • Well, I’m still processing the idea of coconut milk ice cream.Imagine the affogato possibilities! Look through the Sweets (Dolci) listing on the right. You’ll see a number of ice cream recipes. What if I could make the all dairy-free! That would be great!

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  2. Hmmm. Something seems to be missing in the hazelnut affogato picture … Was it so delicious it didn’t even survive long enough to be immortalized photographically? 😀 These look delicious and just in time for the warmer weather. Thanks!

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  3. Pingback: Fried Zucchini Blossoms | from the Bartolini kitchens

    • You’re so right, John, about the flavors of some of the Italian liqueurs. I cannot drink them on their own. My family poured a little in their after dinner coffees. Affogati are pretty much the same but with a bit of ice cream. Give them a try one evening. I’m sure you’ll like them. Thanks, John, for taking time to comment. I do appreciate them.

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  4. I will have to keep these lovely desserts in mind for B! He loves espresso and ice cream. What a lovely and tasty looking dessert! Espresso is, unfortunately, hard on my stomach and I had gave it up almost two years ago now. 😦

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    • These are a great little dessert, though it’s too bad you cannot drink espresso. Well, all that means is that you should serve yourself 2 scoops of ice cream. It’s only fair. 😉

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    • These affogati are so simple to prepare but they sure do taste good! They’re a great way to end a meal.
      Thanks, Shanna, for taking the time to take a walk through the archives and to leave comments as you do. I do appreciate it. 🙂

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