Whilst it may not be quite blackberry picking time, in my world it’s always ice-cream time. I don’t particularly have a sweet tooth, but when it comes to ice-cream, I could eat it by the bucket-load. Normally I wouldn’t go in for fruity flavours, (it’s all about the pistachio as far as I’m concerned) but this blackberry ice cream may just be the one to convert me.
Coconut milk is a thing of beauty in my opinion – it’s a star ingredient that has the ability to transform any recipe. It’s the absolute perfect central component to vegan ice cream because of its ability to replicate the traditional stuff’s richness.
Now, I wouldn’t want you to get the impression that veganism is merely about replication – it’s not. For me vegan food is about celebrating nature’s gifts and bringing it right back to basics. Once we get past the notion we need dairy in ice-cream there’s a whole world of frozen desserts to explore.
It’s true to say that soy can feature quite heavily in many vegan diets and I can’t deny I love to indulge in a delicious soy latte on occasion. For the most part, however, I try to avoid it where and when I can. Unfortunately we’ve recently discovered my Husband has a slight soy intolerance so if I can find a way to exclude it from my recipes I do, and this soy free ice-cream is the answer to my vegan ice-cream prayers because it tastes so darn authentic.
Who needs gelato when you’ve got this?
2 1/2 cups blackberries
1 1/2 cups unrefined vegan granulated sugar
1 can coconut milk
1/2 vanilla pod
Photos: Aine Carlin
1. If using freshly picked blackberries thoroughly wash the blackberries sorting through them to ensure there are no thorny bits etc. If using store bought just give them a rinse.
2. Using a knife split the vanilla pod and remove the seeds.
3. Put all the ingredients into the blender and whizz until completely smooth.
4. Strain the whole lot through a muslin cloth - remember, patience is a virtue, or so I'm told.
5. Transfer to a tupperware container (enough to hold 800ml) and freeze. You can, if you wish, periodically stir it but I personally think it creates more ice-crystals rather than lessening them. If you have an ice-cream maker you are one lucky duck and your ice-cream should be creamy smooth. (Process according to manufacturer's instructions.)
I froze mine for just over a day - let it defrost slightly before serving. Enjoy!