Peanut Butter Coast

After traversing up the west coast from my childhood home in Oregon, over and through beach and mountain and park and forest and water and snow, we’re sitting in a small restaurant in Seattle where we order real Chocolate Peanut Butter ice cream for dessert.

“Do you think that when we get home, you could add chocolate to the peanut butter ice cream you make?” he asks.

Why, of course. Chocolate goes very well with anything naturally vegan and gluten-free. And while I shockingly haven’t yet incorporated chocolate into this recipe as requested in the few days since our return, I will. Very soon.

In stark contrast to the oppressive heat and humidity of Ohio in July, Oregon and Washington offered a good chill — cold, even. Coupled with layers of athletic clothes, peanut butter + chocolate = comfort food and part of the camping experience, the hiking experience, and finally the downtown experience.

In Ohio, during less climate-oppressive months, combatting the chill means having a crochet experience. Crochet is warm and comforting too, like peanut butter. Is it any wonder that I crochet in peanut butter ? Or vanilla, for that matter? What food reference is this color — wheat? Whoops, that blows the gluten-free deal.

000_2033
But back to ice cream. As stated before, I almost never exactly follow a recipe. I’ve had great success with making one or all of the following substitutions in this Peanut Butter Coconut Ice Cream recipe (Vegetarian Times):  Brown sugar for maple syrup, almond milk for the soy creamer (add a little more vanilla than the recipe calls for if you go this route), full-fat coconut milk instead of light, and creamy peanut butter instead of crunchy. I’ve always used the ice cream maker method. And while I haven’t yet blended liquid or powdered chocolate into the batter, throwing chocolate chips on top of the ice cream upon serving is a no-brainer yes.

000_2167
Peanut Butter Coconut Ice Cream
“A heavy-duty blender (such as a Vita-Mix) makes quick work of this frozen treat, but a regular blender will get the job done if you just keep turning it off and pushing down the ice cubes. Or you can simply blend all the ingredients, chill, and process in an ice cream maker.”
  • 1 13.5-oz. can light coconut milk (1 ½ cups)
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup French vanilla soy creamer, divided
  1. Purée coconut milk, maple syrup, peanut butter, and vanilla in blender until smooth. Pour mixture into 2 ice cube trays, and freeze solid. Transfer to resealable plastic bags if storing for more than 2 days.
  2. Place half of ice cream cubes and 1/2 cup soy creamer in blender, and process until smooth and creamy. Repeat with second tray of cubes and remaining ½ cup soy creamer.000_2169

This is perfect for when:

Your parents and your significant other’s are going to meet for the first time in just a few days.
You’ll be with a new client in your renovation-pause home exactly 12 hours from now.
You’re internally and externally challenged about turning on the air conditioning. In a big way.
The fish bowls need cleaned.
~~~~~~
Another imperfect post, accompanied by:
Melissa — the Allman Brothers
~~~~~~
The other blog.

Dairy-free Coconut Cherry Macadamia Ice Cream. Yep.

Here’s the deal — it’s hot and we all know that.  Add in frustrating computer work and something like this is birthed and consumed in no time flat.

Coconut Cherry Macadamia Ice Cream (vegan)

2 cans regular (not light) coconut milk

1/4 to 1/2 cups white sugar (because not long ago I overdosed on agave)

pure vanilla extract to taste

pinch of salt

about 1/4 cup macadmia nuts

about 3/4 cup pitted organic Washington cherries

Process coconut milk, sugar, vanilla and salt in blender.  Throw in macadamia nuts and pulse for just a few seconds.  For a less grittier texture, don’t grind them at all.  Chill mixture in refrigerator until coconut milk starts to solidify, not more than an hour.

Pour/scrape mixture into ice cream machine and process for about 20 minutes, then add cherries and process for 5-10 minutes more.  Spoon some into a bowl for immediate intake and freeze the rest.  It will freeze hard but in these temps, leaving it out on the counter for just a few minutes brings it right back to its way-too-easy-to-eat soft-serve texture.

Related posts (um, all of them? But more specifically):

Lemon Bundt Cake
Mango Mousse
Raw Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Mango Mousse

This, my friends, might be the easiest dessert you ever make.  And, it sports all the latest trendy descriptions — vegan, vegetarian, dairy-, egg-, gluten-, and sugar-free.

It firms up semi-solid in the refrigerator, about the consistency of full fat yogurt, so it’s delectable on its own or with, say, strawberries plus homemade granola = Triple Threat Yum.

Mango Mousse

one 14 oz can of full fat (not lite) organic coconut milk

one peeled mango (I prefer yellow Champagne and here’s how to cut it)

vanilla extract to taste

agave nectar to taste

Place all ingredients in the blender and mix well.  Pour into a small container and refrigerate overnight if you can stand to wait that long.  You will be rewarded with spoonable mousse-like foam that will be hard to put down and very easy to guiltlessly and joyfully put away (eat).

Can you imagine a chocolate version? OH YES.