Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Plum ice cream with ginger and mint

So rather recently my father has adopted a (mostly) vegan diet for environmental and other reasons. For Father's Day this year, I decided I would make him vegan ice cream. The first attempt was peanut butter chunk with cocoa chips. It was pretty good, except that the 100% cocoa bar wrapping was so much like a candy bar that I failed to realize that it was unsweetened and VERY bitter (I recommended he avoid the chocolate chunks in that one). Ok, so lesson learned? Inspired by the seasonally good price on plums at the local grocery store, I decided to revisit Ginger-Plum ice cream and give it a vegan twist. Well, ok, so remember the "mostly" part? I am using honey in this recipe which technically isn't vegan but was given the green light by dad. You could substitute with maple syrup or agave nectar for a fully vegan recipe.

4 black plums, chopped 
1/2 cup (vegan) sugar
1/2 cup honey or vegan alternative

2 sprigs spearmint, stems removed
1 inch disc of fresh ginger, peeled and diced

2 cans organic full fat coconut milk 
1 dash cardamom

1 tsp arrowroot powder (optional)

Combine plums, ginger, sugar, honey, and mint in a saucepan (1) and cook over medium high heat until plums are soft and sugar is absorbed (2). Puree in a blender or food processor and strain, discarding skins (3). Chill puree and cans of coconut milk in the fridge (at least 3 hours).

Combine puree with coconut milk and arrowroot powder* and whip until combined and somewhat increased in volume. Once mixed, transfer into the bowl of your ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions. Remove to a freezer safe container and store in freezer for 1 hour or until ready to eat.

(1)  (2)(3)      

* Arrowroot powder, or a similar starch, can be used to decrease formation of ice crystals in the final product and is often recommended in vegan ice "cream" recipes.

Serving Suggestion: This treat has a refreshing flavor that may be too strong alone. However, paired with a slice of angel food cake, fresh berries, and whipped cream you have a perfect treat for a hot summer day.