It’s winter. And yes! I made ice cream. And guess what? It’s made with just a handful of ingredients and does not include sugar, dairy, or heart-stopping amounts of fats and cholesterol.
I’ve been waiting for a long while to share this ice cream recipe, and since summer isn’t coming round fast enough, I’m going to enjoy my ice cream now. Plus, it’s never too early in the year for ice cream- who needs summer when you’ve got scarves and jumpers and blankets and the warmest spot of sunshine near the window to cuddle up in while you enjoy your ice cream?
I first came across this recipe (does it count as a recipe with only one ingredient?) two or three years back on the internet, and I haven’t stopped making ice cream this way since. I’ve even been known to have it for breakfast. I love that it is a much healthier (and simpler!) alternative to dairy-based ice cream, as it is completely vegan and is actually good for you, what with its fibre, mineral and vitamin content. It’s also cheaper than the unhealthy stuff you get at the store.
‘Well, get on to the point,’ you might be thinking, ‘what is this magic ingredient?’
Yep, plain ol’ humble bananas- but make sure they’re ripe. It’s as simple as this: chop, freeze, and blend, and voilà! Raw, vegan, dairy-free, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, fat-free, refined sugar-free, hassle-free ice cream! It’s suitable for even the most stringent dietary restrictions.
Except for low carb.
If you’re low carb you have my sincere condolences.
Usually, I add in different colours and flavourings to switch things up. The classics, of course, are vanilla, strawberry and chocolate, the holy trinity of ice cream flavours. But I didn’t have any strawberries and I don’t like chocolate-banana combinations (I know, I’m weird), so I went with cherry and coconut carob instead. I kind of forgot about vanilla.
I’ve done some crazy things with this ice cream in my time, like adding beetroot juice to make it bright pink and mess with people’s minds. I’ve also mixed in frozen persimmons and it come out wonderfully with a sorbet-like consistency and a citrus-y flavour. The recipe below is only intended as a reference- you can certainly adjust the proportions of any ingredient and topping, or improvise your own!
To adjust the texture of the ice cream, simply leave it in the freezer for longer or shorter periods of time. I have provided some recommended times in the recipe below for both soft and firm textures. The soft-serve will look like the ice cream pictured above, while the firmer one will look like the one below.
While doing my research for this post and googling around, I came across this video by FullyRawKirstina, which is a rocky road variation upon the same banana theme. And now I’m kicking myself for not thinking of it sooner! It looks gorgeously mouth-watering. So do go check it out if you’ve got a few minutes to kill. 🙂
Cherry and Carob Ice Cream Recipe
(Makes 6 generous servings)
4 – 5 ripe bananas
1/2 cup pitted cherries
1 young coconut
1 tablespoon carob powder
- Peel and cut up the bananas. Spread out on a tray and freeze overnight.
- Transfer half of the frozen bananas to a food processor with the cherries. Process until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a bowl and wrap with cling film. Return to freezer to firm up.
- Open the coconut and set aside the coconut water. Using a metal spoon, scrape out the flesh and add to a food processor.
- Add in the remaining frozen bananas and carob powder. Process until smooth and creamy, adding in coconut water by the tablespoon if needed. Transfer to a bowl and wrap with cling film. Return to freezer to firm up.
- Serve with a generous amount of desired toppings. Enjoy!
FOR SOFT-SERVE ICE CREAM: Freeze for 1 hour to firm up slightly.
FOR FIRMER ICE CREAM: Freeze overnight for a scoopable consistency.