Vegan Coconut Date Ice Cream

Home made ice cream is simply awesome. The kids feel like they are getting a treat (which they are, even if it’s “healthy”), I get to choose exactly what goes in it, and it is cheaper than the store bought kind. It’s an all around win! I really love the simplicity of coconut ice cream. Coconut flavored things is kind like the vanilla of the raw food world. Simple, elegant, non pretentious. I spruced it up by putting some date pieces in it to imitate chunks of caramel. It worked 🙂 And then toasting some coconut pieces to really bring depth to the coconut cream. It was so delicious!! IMG_1578

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup soaked cashews
  • 1/4 cup almond milk or liquid of joice
  • 1 cup coconut cream (from the can, the cream on top)
  • 1/2 cup coconut nectar (Plus extra to drizzle on top)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
  • 1/3 cup coconut shreds
  • 1/4 cup date pieces

Steps:

  • put everything but coconut shreds and date pieces in blender and blend on high until creamy
  • add the coconut shreds and date pieces and continue blending until well incorporated but not broken down.
  • if using an ice cream maker, follow those directions
  • if not, then place in a shallow dish and freeze overnight,
  • take it out about 10-15 minutes before eating and scoop it in to your bowls
  • top with what ever makes you happy!

For the toasted coconut I just threw a handful of coconut pieces in a skillet and heat it up until they started to turn lightly brown, maybe 5 minutes? Easy!!

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Vegan Raspberry Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Chocolate

Happy Valentines Day!!! This treat is more delicious than the title suggests. “More” because it is soooo creamy and dreamy that you wouldn’t guess it’s vegan.

I bought some out of season, over priced, still pretty tasty, raspberries earlier this week because I really wanted to make this Valentines Day treat for my kids. Every now and then I go out of my habitual seasonal produce shopping because what I have in mind sounds so delicious that I must make it, like really soon. And I am so glad I did not wait for spring to make this!!

This guilt free silky smooth indulgence paired with the amazingly deliciously simple crunchy peanut butter chocolate hearts made for a perfect Valentines for my family last night (although I will not wait a whole year to make it again 😉 )

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Ingredients for raspberry ice cream:

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup soaked cashews (30 minutes in hot water, or 4 hours in cold water)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 TBS lucuma (optional but it adds to the creamy texture)
  • 1 cup coconut milk cream (the full fat cream that comes in cans)

Steps:

  • put first 5 ingredients in the blender and blend on high until super creamy and nuts completely broken down
  • add the coconut cream and finish blending
  • if using an ice cream maker, follow directions for that
  • if you don’t have an ice cream maker you can freeze these in ice cube trays and once frozen put them in a food processor or blender to create a nice cold mixture. (You might need to add a little liquid if doing it in the blender.)

This is so tasty that you don’t have to make it into ice cream! You can just eat it straight out of the blender as a yogurt substitute!

While waiting for ice cream, make your chocolate hearts.

Ingredients for chocolate hearts:

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 2 TBS natural crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 TBS honey or other liquid sweetener (adjust according to desired sweetness).

Steps:

  • in a saucepan, put the coconut oil and barely heat it up. Just enough to get it to starts melting.
  • Turn off the heat and add all ingredients except for honey.
  • Mix well until uniform
  • add the honey and mix until honey is very well incorporated in the mixture
  • pour in little heart shaped molds if you have them, if not you can pour this in anything (Ice cube trays, small containers, large containers), and set in the freezer to set
  • the small molds I have only take about 10-15 minutes to set

Pistachio Delight and Nutella Divine

It’s February, the month of LOVE. Although love happens all year round, I don’t mind jumping on the happy train at various scheduled celebrations. So I came up with these, because Love inspired me to. There are two recipes here, but since I created them in the same day and photographed them together, you get them in one post. These little balls are quite a burst of flavor. I am especially happy with the Pistachio Delight as they are a new flavor creation of mine and I am super happy to share it with you. The Nutella Divine is just as the name suggests. Delicious of course as it has chocolate in it. The longest part of these recipes is rolling the balls, so if you want to minimize your active working time, I will offer an alternative at the end of the post.  IMG_1962

Ingredients for the Pistachio Delight:

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1/2 coconut butter
  • 1/4 cup lucuma powder
  • 4 medjool dates
  • 1/4 cup chopped pistachios

Steps:

  • in a food processor blend all ingredients for a few minutes. It will take a little bit for the oils to releases and start binding together. When that starts, add the pistachios and finish blending until a somewhat ball is formed.
  • the “dough” will be somewhat crumbly which is fine
  • using a teaspoon, scoop out a bit of dough and press it in ball shape in between your fingers before rolling it in to a ball in between your palms
  • place on a plate and set in fridge while making the coating

Cacao Coconut Coating:

  • 1/8 cup melted cacao butter
  • 1 TBS maple syrup
  • 1/8 cup finely ground coconut shreds (I used a coffee grinder)
  • combine everything in a bowl and mix well

Roll balls in coating and return to fridge to set. Makes about 35 small balls. Store in fridge.


Ingredients for Nutella Divine:

  • 1/2 cup raw hazelnuts
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 10 medjool dates
  • 1/2 tsp hazelnut extract (optional)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 TBS hazelnut butter
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt

Steps:

  • put everything in food processor and blend until a dough is formed.
  • the “dough” will be somewhat crumbly which is fine
  • using a teaspoon, scoop out a bit of dough and press it in ball shape in between your fingers before rolling it in to a ball in between your palms
  • place on a plate and set in fridge while making the coating

Pink Coating:

  • 1/8 cup cacao butter
  • 1 TBS maple syrup
  • 1 TBS beet juice

Roll balls in coating and set in fridge to set. Store balls in fridge. In the picture I also rolled some of the Pistachio Delight balls in the pink coating. Play around and spread the LOVE!!! Note: to save active working time you can press the mixture very firmly in a pan lined with parchment paper. Set it in the fridge or freezer to set for about 30 minutes (maybe a bit more if in the fridge?), then take out of pan and cut into squares. Proceed with dipping in coating all the same. Although these treats are amazing without the coating as well.

Natures Potato Salad

“Natures” because this salad is 100% natural, and almost raw. The potatoes are cooked but other than that everything else is raw which allows for this american staple to actually be healthy and packed with nutrients. This salad is rich and creamy, you wouldn’t guess it could actually be good for you! This is the kind of salad you bring to party and not tell anyone whats in it until the dish is empty. Because believe me, the dish will be empty this salad is so good. It’s almost sunday, and for americans, that means Super Bowl. Super Bowl is another one of those american get togethers that people use as a reason to over indulge in the worst foods possible with a copious side of alcohol. Most people go to Super Bowl parties not to actually watch football, but to imbibe. If you are one of those people, have fun, and try to be kind to your body. I decided to make my version of the potato salad, (which my husband says people would love to eat with a stack of ribs) to hopefully inspire some to try and be more mindful with what they put in their bodies this weekend. I know there are many of you out there, like me, putting out delicious wholesome twists on party staple foods, which gives me hope for the health of this nation. IMG_1858 Ingredients for the salad:

  • 7 medium gold potatoes, quartered and steamed or boiled for about 20 minutes (make sure not to overcooked them or they will become mush)
  • 2 large ribs of celery, chopped
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1 cup spinach, chopped
  • 1/3 cup finely shredded carrot

Ingredients for sauce:

  • 1 cup soaked cashews (4 hours, or 30 minutes in boiling water)
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 3/8 cup water (is that a weird measurement? I just wanted to use the same measuring cup)
  • 2 tsp french mustard (although I am sure the yellow kind would work fine)
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 date (or 2 tsp honey, or agave)
  • 1/4 tsp salt or more to taste

Steps:

  • Put all the sauce ingredients in the blender and blend until nice and creamy
  • Put all the vegetables in a large bowl
  • coat with the sauce
  • serve and enjoy

Carob Banana Ice Cream

Rich, creamy, smooth and decadent, this ice cream was a total hit. The coconut nectar gives it this nice depth of flavor, almost like molasses but not so intense. I normally would have used honey but didn’t have any and I am so glad I had to use this instead as it really adds to the richness of this dessert. I used carob because again, that is what I had on hand, but you can use cacao just the same. I will for sure be making this again.

First off though I just want to say, my ice cream maker is a pain in the ass. I am not a huge fan of the machine, but I am a huge fan of the end result, so for now I will stick with it. If anyone has an ice cream maker they love, please do tell!!! I have the kitchenaid brand and it just doesn’t work the way it promised. Anyways, I still use it because I love deserts, and I allow myself to complain about it too.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup soaked cashews (at least 4 hours in cold water, or 30 minutes in hot water)
  • 1 cup coconut milk (from a can, the thick and rich kind)
  • 1/2 cup carob powder
  • 1 banana
  • dash of salt
  • 1 TBS soy lecithin
  • 1/8 cup coconut nectar (because the carob is already a little naturally sweet I didn’t have to add too much sweetener, I suggest you taste your mixture before moving on to make sure it is sweet enough for you).

Steps for making with an ice cream maker:

  • blend everything together until nice and creamy
  • follow your ice cream maker’s instructions

Steps for making it in the blender:

  • blend everything together until nice and creamy
  • put in ice cube trays and freeze several hours
  • put back in blender and blend, turning off the machine frequently to scrape down sides and push down mixture
  • You can add a little bit of milk to aid the process, keeping in mind that the end result will be a little more soft

Steps for among it in the freezer:

  • Blend everything together until nice and creamy
  • put in a dish in the freezer
  • mix every 30 minutes to allow a creamy texture to form and not a frozen block
  • do this until desired consistency, I would say at least 2 hours. I know its long, but it is SO worth it.

Steps for making it in the Champion juicer:

  • blend all ingredients until nice and creamy
  • freeze in ice cube trays several hours
  • run ice cubes in the juicer with the blank attachment
  • this will give more a soft serve consistency, for a firmer one, follow up with the freezer steps, but it will only take you about 30 minutes

I topped our ice cream with some jalapeño salted almonds and a drizzle of coconut nectar. I absolutely loved this combo, but of course you can get as creative as you want here 🙂

This makes enough for 4. My husband and I split it in two as it didn’t look like that much, but in all honesty, and this doesn’t happen often, we had a really hard time finishing our bowls and this is so rich, in a really good way. We were dedicated though 😉

Pomegranate Cheesecake

My very good friend Christina just got married. After having their private civil ceremony they had a small gathering at a bistro to celebrate. Because it wasn’t a typical wedding with a reception, I wanted to surprise the couple with one of my tasty raw delights. I also thought that since they had gotten married and all, that there should be cake, or some form of it at least. I always love an opportunity to get in my kitchen and get creating!

Christina and I share a very similar healthstyle when it comes to food. So making raw treats for her is always a win as she so eagerly eats them and appreciates them. Not everyone can enjoy raw desserts. One has to know their crowd. Christina is my crowd 😉

The crust is original Pamplemousse, and I am very happy with how it turned out. Full of texture and flavor, it was a perfect switch from the usual pie crust. As for the filling, it was an adaptation from Tiziana Alipo Tamborra and Matthew Roger’s recipe. It’s in a cookbook or I would share the link with you all of the original recipe.

Since we were at a venue, I couldn’t keep the cheesecake in the fridge the whole time and it got a little soft, one of the downfalls of raw desserts. If you are to make this, I definitely recommend keeping it in the fridge until you serve it. It was still so delicious and extra creamy 🙂

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Ingredients for the crust:

  • 2 cups raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup buckwheat crsipies  (raw buckwheat sprouted then dehydrated). You could probably just use buckwheat groats if this step is not convenient for you.
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
  • 1 cup soft dates (I used medjool)
  • salt
  • 1/8 cup water

Steps:

  • put everything in a food processor except water, and blend until well combined. If it is not sticky enough to stick together, slowly add water while the motor is running until you achieve a “dough” that is somewhat crumbly but that will stick together once pressed down.
  • press it in a 10 inch springform pan and put in fridge while making the filling

Ingredients for filling:

  • 3 cups soaked cashews
  • 2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cups agave
  • 1 TBS liquid vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 TBS lecithin
  • 3/4 cups coconut oil or butter, melted

Steps:

  • put all ingredients except oil and lecithin in blender and blend until really smooth
  • add oil or butter, and lecithin and continue blending until well incorporated
  • pour in pan on top of crust
  • put in freezer to set for about 2 hours
  • transfer to fridge until ready to serve