This post is about a delicious vegan, gluten free version of the traditional ice cream of India. It uses coconut milk or coconut milk and almond milk and is flavored with saffron, cardamom and raw cashews. This is very simple recipe that you don’t even need an ice cream maker for. Basically a simple series of steps, heating and combining ingredients then freezing the resulting mix in individual serving molds. Traditionally these would be cone shaped but the author, Richa Hingle, used small rounded bottom bowls. As she suggests you could use popsicle molds or even plastic cups if you wanted a more traditional looking final shape. Actually this would make great vegan ice cream popsicles. If you end up liking it you will see that it could make a great vegan, gluten-free base for all kinds of flavor combinations.
For the recipe details and other delicious looking vegan indian recipes check out..
In case you are interested, kulfi is normally made from condensed milk or whole milk or a combination that is slowly reduced over a low flame until it is about half the original volume. Both of these versions result in a pronounced caramelized taste.
Here is a short about.com video that shows how it’s typically made:
Saffron Vegan Kulfi
Primary Ingredients/Quantity: coconut milk, saffron / 1 quart Mix Prep Time:20 min Freeze Time:20 min Total Time:40 min Yield:1 quart (8 servings)
I love carrot cake and once bought a large piece with the intention of cutting it up and adding it vanilla ice cream near the end of churning. But having no willpower, I ended up eating the whole piece (with enthusiastic help from my girlfriend) before it made it anywhere near an ice cream maker. I will do this at some point, as I know from experience that this works well with pie and should work equally well with cake. Break up and use around a cup per quart and you will end up with the least elegant, tastiest of desserts (assuming you use good pie or cake of course). It does not hard freeze very well, so its good to make before a dinner party.
Alisa Fleming’s is a “real” vegan ice cream version of carrot cake as it is made completely from scratch. It uses a very interesting and delicious set of ingredients, that should result in a very flavorful, completely vegan ice cream, with a dairy ice cream like texture. The only thing I might be tempted to experiment with is blending some or all of the carrots with the liquids instead of mixing in larger pieces during churning.
Go Dairy Free is an excellent website for non dairy recipes and information. Even if you are not a carrot cake fan you should check out the site.
This delicious vegan ice cream is a version of chai tea using coconut milk in place of cream. All the heady Indian spices you would expect are here: ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and allspice. As noted towards the end of the post you need to replace the honey with agave, maple or other vegetarian syrup for the recipe to be vegan. For non-vegans the two cans of coconut creme could be replaces by 2 cups of cream and 1 of whole milk.
Kate of Cookie+Kate uses a little arrowroot starch as an ice crystal tamer, I used tapioca starch because that’s what I had on hand, and you can also use corn starch in the same qty. The arrowroot is a nice touch, I haven’t seen that before and Kate reports that this ice cream scoops nicely straight from the freezer and since it makes close to a quart and half of ice cream, this is no small thing. You can always make a half recipe of course.
Cereal milk is one of those things people seem to love or roll their eyes at. Soak milk in Fruit Loops or Lucky Charms or Coco Crispies, whatever, until the milk absorbs the flavors and sugars and tastes like what was left at the bottom of your cereal bowl when you were 7 years old. Honestly the first time I came across it, at the Momofuku Milk Bar in New York, it didn’t strike me as very appealing. I probably have been in the Milk Bar 50 times since (the egg and pork buns are fantastic!) and have never been tempted to order it.
Having said that, I think its use in this recipe is inspired. Cereal milk ice cream just seems like such an obvious and natural concoction. Especially since you can mix in some of the original cereal late in the churning process and/or sprinkle some on top when served.
Ashlee at OH Ladycakes has come up with something even more interesting; substituting coconut milk for dairy. I have been on a bit of a coconut milk ice cream kick lately so timing of finding her post was perfect for me.
This is a very simple vegan ice cream that I would suggest you try to eat right out of the maker or after only a few hours in the freezer.
This recipe got me thinking about my favorite cereal as a kid. Royal Lunch Crackers broken up by hand into a bowl with milk poured over them. If you have never tried this and you are a cereal fan, you have to! They can be a bit difficult to find these days.
I bet this would make a tasty base for an ice cream, maybe with some honey or vanilla added in.
Coconut Cereal Milk Ice Cream
Primary Ingredients/Quantity: Coconut cream, cereal milk / 1 quart Mix Prep Time:20 min Freeze Time:30 min Total Time:50 min
This recipe is based on one from Jeni Bauer’s cookbook, Bangkok Peanut Ice Cream. I cut the ingredients in half for what turned out to be a little less than a pint of ice cream. To be honest I wasn’t going to post about it because I was disappointed with how it came out. I thought it tasted too fatty and that the flavor of peanut butter completely overwhelmed everything else. Though I am a big fan of nut ice creams, peanuts are probably my least favorite nut.
The good news is that it turned out to make a fantastic milkshake. I used unsweetened soy milk and a little (1/4 teaspoon or so) vanilla extract, but I am sure any “milk” would work well. The soy milk cut the fat and brought out the toasted coconut flavor. I found it to be quite addicting. If you are a milkshake person I can recommend this ice cream highly. The other reason I’m posting this, is that I made a critical ingredient substitution based on what I had on hand, that I think is the primary reason for it coming out a little fatty. I used canned unsweetened coconut creme instead of the coconut milk the recipe calls for, so blame the chef not the recipe.
Even though Jeni references Pad Thai as her inspiration, I think of this as an ice cream version of a Thai peanut satay sauce. One change I did make was to add some untoasted shredded coconut, in addition to the toasted, in order to bring up the coconut flavor. You can play with the proportions of the peanut butter to coconut milk to change the flavor balance even more if you wish. They both are pretty high in fat, so I don’t think it would drastically alter the texture of the resulting ice cream whatever balance you chose. As usual I used less sugar, 1/2 cup instead of the called for 2/3 cup. So peanut fans and milk shake aficionados, here is the recipe as I made it, except that I am showing Jeni’s ingredient quantities, as halving them didn’t make quite enough.
My version of Jeni Bauer's Bangkok Peanut Ice Cream
1/1/4 cups milk
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch or tapioca starch
1½ ounces (3 tablespoons) cream cheese, softened
¼ cup peanut butter, preferably fresh
½ teaspoon sea salt
1¼ cups heavy cream
¾ cup coconut milk (not light)
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
2 tablespoons honey
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut, toasted
¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
Preheat oven to 325 F
Spread the coconut evenly on a baking sheet.
Turn and stir every minute or two so that the coconut browns evenly.
Bake for about 7 minutes. You really need to watch this carefully, at least once a minute, because it will go from nicely browned to unusable very quickly.
Mix 3 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch in a small bowl until well combined.
Cream Cheese/Peanut Butter
If you have a blender, add to it the cream cheese, peanut butter, salt and cayenne pepper. You don't need to combine them yet. If you don't wish to use a blender, whisk together ingredients in a medium heat proof bowl. Set aside.
Prepare an ice bath of ice cubes and water in a medium size bowl.
Combine remaining milk, cream, coconut milk, sugar, corn syrup, and honey in a 4 quart heavy saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil on medium heat and boil for 4 minutes.
Remove from heat and gradually mix in the corn starch slurry. You will probably have to mix up the slurry again before adding it.
Put the mixture back on the burner and cook until thickened, about a minute or so.
Pour the milk mixture into the blender or bowl you have the cream cheese mix in and combine until smooth.
Mix in the toasted and untoasted shredded coconut. If using a blender, just pulse a few time to combine.
Pour the mixture into a one gallon Ziploc bag and immerse in the ice bath for 30 minutes. Add more ice to keep cold if you need to.
Pour the ice cream into your ice cream maker and freeze.
Store in a freezer proof container with a layer of cling wrap pressed down to the surface of the ice cream to remove air bubbles. Store for about 4 hours before serving.
Coconut milk is a very creamy, dairy-free alternative for those who are lactose intolerant or allergic to animal milk. Those who subscribe to the low-carb lifestyle often prize coconut milk for it’s minimal starch content. A vegan drink, it is also soya-free, gluten-free, cholesterol-free and nut-free while its fat content is considered to a ‘good fat’, easily metabolised by the body and quickly turned into energy rather than being stored as fat. Coconut milk is also rich in lauric acid, a substance also found in human milk, which researchers have shown have anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. Unlike other nut or plant milks, the saturated fat content of coconut milk is significant at five grams per serving, so drink it in moderation.
What I really enjoyed about this post by Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan on The Kitchn blog, was its sheer joie de vivre or should I say joie d’expérimenter. Set some extreme starting rules and see what you can come up with that stays within them, still resembles ice cream, and of course tastes good. In this case, no dairy, no eggs, no sugar; pretty extreme wouldn’t you agree? Well Sarah came through with a spectacularly simple combination of coconut milk, inherently sweet fruit and vegetable juices, and corn starch. Talk about versatile and tasty. In the post she tries different combinations of beet juice, apples, celery, carrots, pears, ginger; just about anything you would use in your juicer. Read the recipes here:
Not that the recipes need it, especially if eaten right from your ice cream maker, but one direction I might go if experimenting, would be to add ingredients to try to smooth out the texture further and keep it softer when stored in the freezer. Maybe a tablespoon or two of an appropriate liqueur or vodka. Also you have to wonder what you could come up with using a really good juice recipe book as the basis for more flavors to try.
Coconut Milk Ice Cream with Fruit or Vegetable Juice
Primary Ingredients/Quantity: Coconut Milk / 1 pint Mix Prep Time:30 min Freeze Time:20 min Total Time:50 min
Vegan ice cream isn’t really ice cream, of course but who cares? Why should vegans and other folks who can’t eat dairy products be denied the simple pleasures afforded the rest of us? How do you make something that tastes like ice cream without using dairy products or eggs? There are a number of cream substitutes that can form the basis of a vegan friendly frozen dessert. The trick is in recreating a creamy texture and smoothness similar to cow’s milk.
In this article from Slate, author Miriam Krule reviews 6 Whole Foods available vegan ice creams. Most are based on Coconut Milk, but Soy and Almond milks are also represented. I thought the author came up with good criteria for judging her victims:
We had three main criteria: taste, texture, and simplicity. While it’s safe to say no vegan alternative will taste exactly like ice cream, there still should be an appealing flavor independent of the base. (An ice cream made from coconut milk shouldn’t taste exactly like frozen coconut milk.) As for texture, it’s not called ice cream for nothing—rich smoothness is essential to a frozen dessert’s appeal. And by simplicity, I’m referring to the number of ingredients contained in each pint. Perhaps I’ve been overly influenced by the marketing for Häagen-Dazs Five, which boasts just five ingredients (three of which are verboten for vegans), but no one wants to eat a chemistry experiment.
I encourage you to read the rest of the entire article but I’m not going to leave you in suspense; her favorite of the bunch was…
So Delicious ($6.49 per pint) The second coconut-based ice cream we tried was the first to fully live up to its name. Even if So Delicious doesn’t taste exactly like ice cream, it accomplished everything a good ice cream should. For starters, it felt like the real deal: Where most of the others seemed like weird, inexact approximations of frozen custard, this one excelled in its extra creamy texture. With no premature meltage or jagged texture, this one was smooth sailing from the beginning of the bowl to the end. Equally important: It had a rich, chocolaty flavor that wasn’t overwhelmed by that of its coconut base—no evocations of bad macaroons here. With only seven ingredients, it aced the simplicity test, too. Granted, I haven’t tasted real ice cream in some time—but I’m fairly confident that So Delicious will remind everyone, vegan or not, of everything they loved about ice cream in the first place.
One of the things that stood out for me is just how expensive these products are. Four of the six are over six dollars a pint! Clearly we need to find more good vegan recipes to add to the site but this one is good place to start. If you know of any you would like to share please leave a comment or email me.