September 13th, 2013
It’s a little strange to be sharing an ice cream recipe now. (Well, not if you match your eats to the weather: holy summer heat!). I’ve been working on this recipe for a while now and it’s finally ready to share. I won’t let the fact that school has started or, the surest sign that fall is here, that I’m on the hunt for knee-high boots stop me.
When you look at the recipe, you might be surprised to hear that I’ve been developing it for so long. There’s not much to it, which is what I thought was the problem. It was never quite right, so I kept adding things. Peanut butter. Banana. Peanut butter and banana. Oreos. Peanut butter, banana and Oreos.
You know I’m pulling out the big guns when I grab Oreos. But even they weren’t the answer. (There’s a first time for everything.)
I wanted to post an OMG non-dairy chocolate ice cream, not just a really good one, so I gave up. Til next summer, I thought, until last weekend’s trip to local ice cream parlor, Van Leeuwen. We ordered vegan chocolate ice cream. It was killer.
I got home and pulled out the ice cream maker, September be damned. I also pulled out coconut milk, cocoa powder, sugar and—something new this time—chocolate chips.
See, the vegan ice cream at Van Leeuwen was simple and rich and showed me that I had been way too focused on add ins. Instead, I needed to intensify my chocolate base. And what better way to do that than by adding real, melted chocolate.
If you’re a crazy chocolate fanatic and not concerned with making this dairy-free or vegan, use your favorite splurge chocolate in this recipe. You don’t need much and it will make this ice cream fantastically delicious. High-quality chocolate chips work for me. I admit that I’m a milk chocolate person, but use dark if that’s generally your preference.
Also, I warn you that this is more the consistency of gelato or even a semifreddo if you try it before an overnight freeze. It’s soft and melts pretty fast. There are ways to adjust that, but it would make the recipe more complicated. Not much, but still: this is so easy and so tasty without calling for any unusual ingredients. I have no plans to mess with it.
Okay, that’s not true. I will try to make this thicker, heartier. I’ll cook the coconut milk. I’ll add arrowroot or something like it to create a custard consistency that will freeze more solid. But not now. Probably not until next summer. For now, this is OMG chocolate flavor that yields from 5 minutes of prep and requires nothing that comes from a cow. And, that, I had to share.
Non-Dairy Chocolate Ice Cream
(can be shared with kids 12+ mos)*
Makes about a pint of ice cream
1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips, such as Enjoy Life (you can substitute your favorite dairy-full chips)
1 15-ounce can coconut milk
1/3 cup granulated sugar (use vegan sugar if you want to make this vegan)
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1. Place chocolate chips in the top of a double boiler or in a microwave safe bowl and, either on the stove top or in the microwave, melt the chips. (If using the microwave, heat the chips in short intervals, 20-30 seconds, and stir in between to see how much further they need to go.) Stir melted chips with a spoon until smooth. Set aside.
2. Add coconut milk, sugar and cocoa powder to a blender and blend until thoroughly mixed. Add melted chocolate and mix again.
3. Add coconut milk mixture to the chilled bowl of an ice cream maker and churn for at least 30 minutes or until the liquid has turned into a soft frozen solid. Transfer ice cream to a freezer-proof container and freeze until solid, overnight or at least 4 hours, before serving.
*Note: While there is nothing in this that is unsafe for younger eaters, I recommend this beginning at 12 months due to the high sugar content. No matter how old your eaters, be sure to serve age appropriate portions. Just a little of this sweet treat goes a long way with little ones.