Coconut Ice Cream

Coconut Ice Cream

Making ice cream has always been one of my favourite things to do in the kitchen. It also holds a special place in my memory – when I was 15 a family friend tasted my chocolate ice cream and was so impressed she suggested that I go to chef school! It hadn’t even occurred to me, so that experience was what inspired me to attend chef school.

When I started cutting out dairy and refined sugar I knew that ice cream would be first on my list of things to reinvent. This ice cream is a perfect replacement for traditional vanilla ice cream. It can be eaten on its own or served with something like my Raw Chocolate Tart. It can also be used as a base for other flavours. Omit the coconut flakes and try adding cacao nibs and a few drops of peppermint essential oil, fresh raspberries, or finely chopped dates and nuts. The options are endless – use your imagination!

Ingredients (makes about 600ml)

400ml coconut cream
45ml organic virgin coconut oil
a pinch of Oryx Desert Salt
a pinch of vanilla powder
1/4 tsp stevia leaf powder
45ml raw honey
2 egg yolks
1 whole egg
1/2 cup organic coconut flakes

Method

Place the coconut cream, coconut oil, salt, vanilla, stevia, honey and egg into a high speed blender and blend for about 4 or 5 minutes, until the mixture has heated through, thereby cooking the egg.

If you don’t have a high speed blender, simply blend the mixture until smooth or even use a whisk to combine. Then transfer to a saucepan on a very gentle heat. Stir continuously to prevent the egg from scrambling. There should be steam coming off the custard but it must never boil. To check if the egg is cooked, dip the back of a spoon into the custard and then draw a line across the back of the spoon with your finger. Hold it horizontally and if the custard doesn’t drip it is cooked. With experience you can also taste when it is done. Traditionally ice cream was made with raw egg, so as long as you have good hygiene practices in the kitchen it’s not paramount that the egg be fully cooked. However, cooking the egg does thicken the custard thereby giving a creamier texture to the ice cream.

Place the coconut flakes in a frying pan and lightly toast them over a medium heat. Keep your eye on it and toss regularly as it can burn quite quickly. Turn out onto a chopping board and use a knife to chop into smaller pieces. Add to the custard.

If you have an ice cream machine, simply pour the custard into your prepared machine and churn until done, then transfer to a suitable container and store in a freezer.

If you don’t have an ice cream machine, pour the custard into a sealable container and place in the freezer. Use a whisk to stir the mixture every 20 to 30 minutes. By breaking up the ice crystals regularly as it freezes you achieve a smoother texture. You should do this for at least 2 – 3 hours, until the mixture starts to freeze into a smooth ice cream. At this point you can just leave it in the freezer to freeze completely.

Remember to remove the ice cream from the freezer 5 – 10 minutes before serving, to allow it to soften.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Coconut & Cacao Ice Cream

Coconut Cacao Ice Cream

Yes it’s ice cream, but I had it for breakfast. Ice cream for breakfast?? When it’s healthy, why not? It’s simply bananas, raw cacao, coconut cream and a drop of maple. That’s it! Indulge why don’t you 🙂

Ingredients

2 frozen bananas (freeze the night before in slices
The creamy part from the top of a can of coconut milk (save the watery part for a curry or something)
1 tsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp organic maple syrup
Desiccated coconut

Method

Put all the ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Top with the coconut and enjoy.

Love,
Lauren

Roasted Lemon Ice Cream

Roasted Lemon Ice Cream

My new favourite thing to do with lemons is to roast them. The natural sugar in the lemons caramelises, giving it a beautiful flavour somewhat similar to preserved lemons. This egg-based (but dairy-free) ice cream is packed full of an intense lemon flavour, the slight bitterness of which is off set by the honey. It pairs beautifully with my Raw Chocolate Tart, or just some shavings of raw chocolate.

Ingredients

380g whole lemons (about 3)
125ml raw honey
125ml organic virgin coconut oil
250ml almond or coconut milk
1/2 tsp organic stevia leaf powder
1/2 tsp organic vanilla powder or 1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of himalayan salt
4 egg yolks
2 whole eggs

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 C.
Cut the knobbly end off the lemons and slice into quarters lengthways. Cut off the pithy white membrane which runs through the middle of the lemon and remove all pips.

Lemon Ice Cream 2

Place the lemons in an ovenproof dish and roast for about 1 hour, until the lemons are soft and slightly caramelised. Double check that there are no pips as adding these to the blender could ruin the flavour.

Place all the ingredients in the blender, adding the eggs last so that they don’t start to cook when they come into contact with the hot lemons. Blend until completely smooth. Ice cream is traditionally made with raw eggs, but if you’re put off by the thought of raw egg, continue blending until the mixture heats up to 65 C. You can measure this with a thermometer if you’re really worried, but basically if there is steam coming off the mixture the egg is cooked. You can also taste the difference when the egg is cooked.

Place the mixture in the fridge until cooled, and then put it into an ice cream machine to churn until frozen. If you don’t have an ice cream machine you can simply put it in the freezer and mix with a whisk every 30 minutes to break up crystals, until almost frozen, at which point you can leave it to freeze till set.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Mango Coconut Ice Cream

mango coconut ice cream

The last few mornings in Joburg have been quite chilly and I’m not at all happy to admit that autumn is definitely on its way. Use the last of our beautiful tropical summer fruit to make this quick and easy ice cream – no dairy or sugar! I’ve frozen it in lolly molds to make it fun for my son, but you could also freeze it as regular ice cream to be scooped on its own or to accompany a dessert.

Ingredients:

650g fresh mango flesh (about 2 mangoes)
1 tin (400ml) organic coconut milk
60ml organic virgin coconut oil
30ml raw honey
1/4 tsp himalayan salt
1/4 tsp organic vanilla powder or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp organic stevia leaf powder

Method:

Blend all the ingredients until smooth. Pour into lolly moulds and freeze, or process in an ice cream machine. If you don’t have an ice cream machine, freeze until almost set, then blend again to break up the crystals and return to the freezer.

mango coconut ice cream 2

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Baobab & Melon Nice Cream (African Superfoods Part 1)

Baobab & Melon Ice Cream

There’s a lot of hype about Central and South American superfoods, but here in Africa we have some amazing plants too! I think it’s important to both be proud of your country & heritage, as well as to support locally grown and manufactured products. Over the next few weeks I want to do a series of posts on various African superfoods. For those of you in other parts of the world, I hope it will be interesting and informative (most of them are becoming more well known and popular in health circles so you should be able to get hold of them.) For fellow South Africans, I hope this will encourage you to make use of our beautiful continent’s bounty 🙂

baobab tree copy

According to African legend, long, long ago the first baobab tree sprouted beside a lake. As it grew, it surveyed the other trees and admired their colourful flowers, their tall, straight trunks and their beautiful green foliage. One day the little tree was tall enough to see its own reflection in the lake. It was dismayed at the sight! Its trunk was short and fat, its leaves were sparse and dull and its bark looked like the wrinkled hide of an elephant. The tree implored the Creator to change its appearance, but its request was ignored. Day after day, it watched the beautiful trees, compared them to its own reflection, and cried to the heavens. One day the Creator had had enough, reached down and unearthed the tree. Turning it upside down, the Creator replanted the tree with its branches in the earth, and its roots in the sky. From that day on the baobab tree was silenced, and as penance has served animals and humans with good deeds ever since.
Source: http://www.ecoproducts.co.za

These beautiful trees are grown in 32 African countries, and are revered by many tribes, even worshipped by some. The fruit is a highly nutritious food source, the seeds provide oil (I used baobab oil during and after my pregnancy to prevent stretch marks) and the fibre in the bark is used to make fishnets, cord and clothing. The trunks are a good source of timber and are often hollowed out and used for shelter, grain storage or as water reservoirs.

Baobab powder has recently become a very popular superfood, and for good reason. The powdered fruit contains 3 times more calcium than milk, 4 times more vitamin C then oranges, 6 times more potassium then bananas, 5 times more anti-oxidants than blueberries, a whopping 16 times more fibre than pears, and 5 times more magnesium than avocados. Its sweet-tart flavour makes the perfect addition to this quick and easy vegan “nice cream.”

Ingredients

350g melon, weighed without skin or seeds
2 bananas
3 tbsp baobab powder (I use EcoProducts)
1 – 2 tbsp raw honey
1/2 cup almond milk

Method

This requires some forethought, in that you have to freeze the melon and banana overnight (or you could freeze when you have it and use whenever!) I used canary melon, but you could also use spanspek (aka cantaloupe) or honeydew (aka musk melon.)

Place all the ingredients in your blender and blend until smooth and creamy, using your tamper to mix as you blend. The amount of honey required depends on the sweetness of the melon. I had a melon that was not very sweet, which is why I decided to freeze it and turn it into ice cream. You may have a melon so sweet that you won’t need any honey at all, so sweeten to taste.

This will serve 2 people as breakfast or 4 people as dessert. If you have any left over you can freeze it again. It won’t be quite as smooth and creamy, more like a sorbet, but still delicious.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Three Variations of Homemade Ice Cream

IMG_9364 (3)

I kid you not, homemade ice cream is the easiest thing to make! You need to have a good, high-speed blender like the Vitamix, and some fruit. That’s literally it!

Freeze bananas the day before, then add them to the blender. The super high speed turns the frozen bananas into cream without actually putting any cream in there, that is how simple it is!

Variation 1:
Just frozen bananas, topped with Chunky Monkey Cookie Dough Chunks

Variation 2:
Frozen bananas with two dates to make a banana caramel ice cream, topped with Raw Cacao Cookie bites

Variation 3:
Simple sorbet – frozen strawberries and raspberries topped with some raspberries.

You can top with date syrup, nuts, seeds, fruit, desiccated coconut – anything you like. My parents came over for dinner tonight and couldn’t believe it was completely and totally plant-based and guilt-free!

Happy ice cream eating!
Love,
Lauren ❤