Fear not ice cream lovers with dietary restrictions…you can still indulge in sweet satisfaction! After many a trials to achieve the perfect consistency & balance of flavours, I can happily (who wouldn’t be happy after eating ice cream for weeks on end?!) attest, this absolutely hits the spot. The rich creaminess is achieved thanks to coconut cream in place of dairy cream, with headily aromatic vanilla bean & honey delicately sweetening the concoction. The addition of slightly salted sweet almonds makes it a true delight to be slowly savoured mouthful by mouthful…oops, all gone.
Ice Cream Ingredients
5 free-range egg yolks (at room temperature)
1 vanilla bean
500 ml of coconut cream
100 ml of honey
Pinch of sea salt
Almond Brittle Ingredients
(For a more kid-friendly ice cream you can omit the almonds from the mixture & add them on top of the plated/coned ice cream for those who like the addition of crunch!)
1 tablespoon of honey
¼ teaspoon of sea salt
1 cup of raw almonds, roughly chopped
1. Halve the vanilla pod lengthways & put it into a pan with the coconut cream & honey. Bring to the boil, & stir until the honey is melted. Allow to stand for 5 minutes
2. Meanwhile, put the egg yolks into a blender & blend for 5 minutes, or until they go creamy. Add a small pinch of salt.
3. Bring the coconut cream mix back to the boil and pour it slowly on to the eggs, blending as you go. The cream needs to be hot & the eggs room temperature to make a custard of sorts, but not as thick as your usual custard.
4. While it’s cooling, dry roast the almonds in a fry pan until just starting to colour. Add the honey & salt, stirring constantly for a couple of minutes (it burns very quickly, so keep an eye on it!) Once they are starting to caramelise, turn off the heat & set aside.
5. Let it cool to room temperature, place into an ice-cream maker (add almonds at this stage if you have a maker) & freeze.
6. If you don’t have an ice-cream maker (I don’t) then transfer it to a plastic container, with a lid (without the almonds)
7. Place it in the freezer for a couple of hours, or until it starts to solidify around the edges.
8. Remove from the freezer & beat it thoroughly with an electric beater. Repeat this one more time a few hours later. Add the almonds and let freeze completely.
Nutrition Bite: Vanilla Beans – Since the times of the Aztecs, the scent and flavour of vanilla is believed to increase lust. A recent study conducted at Chicago’s ‘Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation’ found that men were most aroused by just one simple smell… vanilla! A natural aphrodisiac, the vanilla bean’s complex flavour isn’t easy to come by — vanilla orchids flower just one day a year, and cultivation depends on careful hand-pollination!