Apparently, sometime around Memorial Day weekend, I blinked, it became August, and summer was almost over. Applause to me for not paying attention at all. I am firm believer, though, that the time is always right for ice cream. So that said, let's dedicate this Friday post to the end of summer and using ice cream to make any day feel like a lazy July.
If you do not have an ice cream maker, I highly recommend that you get one. They come in all variety of price points (or for you Kitchen Aid stand mixer owners, you can get the handy dandy attachment), but the results are always delicious. I did not fully appreciate how much better homemade ice cream tastes until I made a batch myself, and it's fun to make to boot. Plus, when you make ice cream yourself, the results are really intense (in that good way), so you tend to eat less. See? Make ice cream for your health.
Greg is actually not a huge fan of sweets and baked goods. Once I picked myself up from the floor from learning this, we found a middle ground - ice cream. Greg is an ice cream fiend. So, for Valentine's Day a few years ago, I bought him an ice cream maker, so we could be cute and couple-y and make our own ice cream. It was such a great plan, the ice cream maker sat in the box for two and a half years before we busted it out.
So what finally convinced us to bring out the ice cream maker, only to fall in love with it all over again? The Vegan Scoop by Wheeler Del Torro. I read a recommendation on the VegCooking blog (http://blog.vegcooking.org) and promptly ordered the book. It has been life changing to say the least. Exaggerating much? I don't think so. Our first foray, admittedly, fell a bit flat, because our first recipe, Mint Chocolate Chip, apparently had a fateful misprint. (In related news, if you pick up this cookbook, only use 1/2-1 tsp. peppermint extract...or you will end up with frozen Listerine like we did). Every recipe since then, however, has been magical. The one below is my favorite so far.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Ice Cream (adapted from The Vegan Scoop)
Yields: 1 quart
1 c. soymilk, divided
2 Tbsp. arrowroot powder (you can find this on the spice aisle)
1 c. soy creamer
3/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 c. chocolate chips (my vegan fave is Ghirardelli)
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
3/4 - 1 1/2 c. natural peanut butter
1) In a small bowl, combine 1/4 c. soymilk with 2 Tbsp. arrowroot powder. Set aside.
2) Mix soy creamer, remaining soymilk, sugar, cocoa powder, and chocolate chips in a saucepan and cook over low heat, for approximately 15-20 minutes, stirring constantly. When the mixture begins to boil, immediately remove from heat and add the arrowroot mixture and vanilla. This will cause the ingredients to thicken.
3) Chill mixture for 3 hours in the fridge.
4) Freeze according to your ice cream maker's instructions. In the last few minutes of freezing, swirl in the peanut butter. The original recipe calls for 3/4 c. of peanut butter...but if you're like me and can't get enough peanut butter and chocolate, you may need to double the peanut butter...