Category Archives: ice cream

Nougat Ice Cream

Hey there, friends and foes. I know it’s been uber-long since I have posted jack-squat here and I apologize for that. A life-changing illness, some cancer, a change of city, and the death of both of my parents got in the way of keeping my blogging priorities straight. Alas. I’m back, and hopefully for good.

Yes, I have been cooking the past few years. I’ll never not be cooking and dreaming of next meals. My blood is made of French brie and rosé, after all. This ice cream is so easy, you don’t even need an ice cream maker for it. It’s a no-sugar version of Bruce Weinstein’s recipe that appears in The Ultimate Ice Cream Book, which I love.

You could probably make an SCD version of this by using your own homemade yogurt and almond extract, whipping the (warmed) honey into the yogurt, and then processing in an ice cream maker. If you try this, let me know how it turns out.

Nougat Ice Cream (no sugar)

2 egg whites

1/3 c honey (if you love sugar and can’t live without it, you can also use, in addition to the honey, up to a 1/2 c sugar)

1/4 c water

1 1/2 c heavy cream

1/2 tsp almond extract

1/2 c toasted almonds (or other nuts)

1. Beat the egg whites to soft peaks and set aside.

2. Combine the honey (and sugar if you are using) and water in a small, heavy saucepan and heat over low until honey dissolves. Raise the heat to a boil and without stirring, let honey cook for two minutes.

3. Remove the honey from the heat and very slowly drizzle it into the egg whites while beating. You may need some help here, but it is possible to do this solo.

4. Continue beating the mixture for five full minutes until it’s cooled down somewhat. Set aside.

5. In a separate bowl, beat the cream until it’s loosely-thick, then add the almond extract and beat until the cream is fairly thick (Bruce states to the consistency of sour cream).

6. Gently fold the cream and almonds into the meringue mixture.

7. Spatula the mix into a freezer container and freeze overnight.

There are a lot of ways you can go with this master recipe, adding traditional nougat ingredients (dried fruits, pistachios or other nuts) or other flavor combinations (e.g., mint, rose, or other extracts). If you use dried fruits, you might want to soak them in booze first so that they aren’t hard as rocks when you bite into them in the finished product.



Filed under ice cream, Recipes, SCD

Vanilla Ice Cream

After our football season ended so tragically last weekend, The Man and I consoled ourselves with this vanilla ice cream. Granted, I had planned for this to be a celebration treat. But. So it goes.

Vanilla Ice Cream

1 can coconut milk

1/4 c honey

3 vanilla beans

Makes enough for four, or just two football-depressed people.

  1. Split the vanilla beans down the center with a sharp knife. Scrape out the goodness.
  2. Put the vanilla beans, vanilla paste, honey, and coconut milk in a saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from heat and let the mixture sit for several hours so the coconut milk is flavored with the vanilla.
  4. Pour into the canister of your ice cream maker and process.

Note to self: This makes a really rich and coconut-y/vanilla-y ice cream that is awesome. In the past, I always put 1/3 c of honey in my coconut milk ice creams, but since I’ve been cutting back on honey, fruit, and carbs, 1/4 c of honey in this was just fine.

vanilla ice cream in a glass bowl

Go Jets! (sniff, sniff)


Filed under dessert, gluten-free, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes, SCD

Strawberry Ice Cream

Did I wake up this morning and it’s already September 1st? How is that possible? And yet, already I feel those strange cool breezes and notice the sun acting funny, setting a lot earlier than it should. Alas, I have a mere twenty-one days of summer left to enjoy.

Thankfully, the weather actually seems to be cooperating here for once. We’ve had some beautiful days of eighty-degree weather. I’m hoping it holds so that my newly planted collards, kales, and greens get a decent start before The Rain begins. Also, it’s nice to use my stovetop again finally. I’m making a soup right now from my old Fields of Greens cookbook. Mmmm!

If I must bid summer adieu, what better way to do it than to post my strawberry ice cream recipe? This is the recipe we served at El Puerco this year, so for those of you in attendance, you’ll (hopefully) remember it fondly. Somehow, sadly, I forgot to take a picture of it, so I have included a photo of the menu instead.

Strawberry Ice Cream

1 can coconut milk
2 c chopped strawberries
1/3 c sugar
1/3 c agave syrup

Macerate the strawberries in the sugar for 30-60 mins. Put the coconut milk, agave syrup, and macerated strawberries into a blender and blend. Pour this mix into your ice cream maker and proceed according to mfr’s instructions. I think it’s especially good to top the finished product with more macerated strawberries, as we did at El Puerco.

Every time I post one of these coconut milk ice cream recipes I feel obligated to say my disclaimer, which is: forget about dairy-based homemade ice creams. Using coconut milk is the BEST. You don’t have to make it up ahead of time and it freezes way better than homemade dairy ice cream. Take a leap of faith for me on this, and let me know how it turns out if you try it.

El Puerco Menu next to the Declaration of Independence

El Puerco Menu next to the Declaration of Independence

Oh yeah, and I also updated my Flickr feed. One day on my way to volunteering at the Travel Portland Visitor Information Center, I took some photos along the way, mostly to entice my friends and family to visit me. You should be able to click on that in the right sidebar. Enjoy!

Oh yeah yeah, I also finally created Everything should be working fine, but pardon some of the inevitable glitches while I figure things out.

Leave a comment

Filed under Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

Lime Ice Cream

Seems like I haven’t posted a recipe in a while, though I have been working on several. Here’s a photo of the very scientific way in which recipes are developed at AFFFG:

Recipe post-its covering fridge

Recipe post-its covering fridge

This lime ice cream was created as a result of the heap of key limes we had leftover after the keylime cheesecake experiment (which went very well, recipe soon).

Lime Ice Cream

1 can coconut milk

1/3 c lime juice

1/3 c agave syrup

8 oz pkg of cream cheese (omit if you’re vegan)

dash of salt

4-6 drops of green food coloring (optional)

  1. Place all ingredients in your food processor and pulse until thoroughly mixed.
  2. Process in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Mange!

I should probably somehow archive all my ice cream recipes together on this site somewhere. If you know how to do that, let me know.

Eat me now!

Eat me now!


Filed under Cooking, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

Toasted Black Sesame Ice Cream

I feel like the nutty professor that’s always late, always arriving in rumpled jeans and with post-it notes stuck in her uncombed hair. I’m not really like that, I swear, but my ability to keep my blog updated lately seems to have suffered a major setback. I’m going to blame it on the change of weather we’re (finally) experiencing here in the PNW. It’s really been gorgeous. Even when it’s raining I’m like, hey, it’s 50F! Rejoice!

A few weeks ago I had dinner at Ping. It was awesome. I chose carefully, but still suffered for several days due, I think, to the spice level of several dishes. I won’t be going back anytime soon, but you know what, it was totally worth it.

One thing that was incredible was this toasted black sesame ice cream. I left the place thinking, I just have to make that at home. After a few attempts, I think I’ve perfected the recipe.

And I’m here to tell you: FORGET about using milk and eggs. Just put that out of your mind right now. Coconut milk really is the best possible ice cream-making liquid available to womankind. Of that, I am convinced. Here’s my evidence:

  • You don’t have to make the mixture a day in advance. You can just whip up your coconut milk-based ice cream mixture on a whim and toss it into your ice cream maker.
  • No fuss with scalding milk and tempering eggs.
  • Coconut milk is super allergen-friendly and vegan for all your food freaky friends. Not that vegans are freaky…gawd!! Don’t put words in my mouth!
  • It tastes really good and adds a nice flavor to almost any ice cream flavor.
  • It freezes so much better than milk-based homemade ice creams. (Actually, this is the very best reason).

Okay, so, just for you, I did look around on the Web a bit for other recipes, just to see what was out there. But they’re all milk-based and we’ve already discussed why you want to use coconut milk, so I’m not even going to link there.

I love this ice cream. In addition to its rich, nutty flavor, there’s this fab texture thing going on with this ice cream that makes my mouth so very happy.

Okay, enough talk and blabber! Here’s the recipe. Let me know if you try this at home.

Toasted Black Sesame Ice Cream

1 can coconut milk

1/4 c toasted black sesame seeds

1/3 c agave syrup

dash of salt

  1. Put your ice cream bowls in the freezer.
  2. Toast the sesames in your toaster oven or under your broiler. If you’re doing it under your broiler, be very careful not to burn them. Because they are black, you really have to go by smell here. Buy extra in case you burn your first (few) batches. I tossed mine a few times with a spatula to toast them evenly. Here’s a pic of the finished product.

    Toasted sesames

    Toasted sesames

  3. Toss all ingredients into your blender. Pulse a few times, wiping down the sides with a spatula between pulses so that you get all the seeds blended. I pulsed a total of 4-5 times.
  4. Process in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  5. Serve in your fresh-from-the-freezer, very cold ice cream bowls.



Yes, it really is that easy. Enjoy!


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

Green Tea Ice Cream

Green tea is definitely one of my favorite ice cream flavors. I had a real hankering for it a few weeks ago and got all sad and pissy about how I couldn’t have it anymore. That lasted about thirty seconds, which is the time it took me to think that maybe I could make it myself. So I gave it a shot. It is so flippin’ easy, even my dog could make it.

Dog-easy Green Tea Ice Cream (vegan and GF)

1 can coconut milk

8 green tea bags

1/3 c agave syrup (or sweetener of choice)

  1. Bring the coconut milk to a simmer on your stovetop.
  2. Turn down the heat and add the sweetener. Stir until dissolved.
  3. Add the green tea bags and cook on low heat for ten minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon and gently pressing the tea bags every minute or so.
  4. Turn off the heat and let the bags steep for twenty minutes, nudging them every now and then with your spoon.
  5. Process in your ice cream maker.

Here’s how happy this ice cream makes my dog, Pickle:

The Belly Slut

The Belly Slut


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

(Vegan) Coffee Ice Cream

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve complained about being too busy on this blog…well, I certainly wouldn’t be panicking about my tanked 401K right now. But seriously, I don’t actually have enough of a 401K to panic, so I suppose I should count my blessings there.

The point is: I get busy, and then I neglect the things I love, like my blog, and my novel, and The Man. What could I possibly be doing that takes up all my time?

For one thing, developing recipes. Yes, I am a slave to recipe development. I tell you, if Cook’s Illustrated ever needs a meticulous recipe tester, I’m their girl!

This week we have been making coffee ice cream, from coconut milk, of course (back to our regularly scheduled programs: Cooking with Coconut Milk. Maybe I should rename my blog “Lots of Coconut Milk Recipes”).

First, we started out, as usual, ill-prepared (do not mention this to the Cook’s Illustrated people!) We got a hankering for coffee ice cream, looked in the cupboard to see what we had lying around waiting to transform itself into coffee ice cream, and found a can of coconut milk, honey, and some canned coffee grounds that we keep for company since we ourselves are not big coffee drinkers.

So, with these modest ingredients, we set off on our journey.



As you can see, we mixed the ingredients together and then ran them through a strainer.

Coffee Ice Cream Mixture with Split Peas Lurking in Background

Coffee Ice Cream Mixture with Split Peas Lurking in Background

What we learned from this exercise was this:

  1. It’s very difficult to take groovy cooking action shots whilst The Man is out mountain biking.
  2. The Brightness/Contrast filter on our photo-modifying software kicks butt and makes for very Martha-like blog photos.
  3. Coffee grounds are actually very finely ground and they don’t take well to straining, leaving us with an ice cream mixture more grainy than one would like.
  4. That’s okay because it still tasted really good and we will teach you how to avoid this problem in our final recipe.

So you’re probably wondering by now if I’ll include a recipe for this goodness. Here it is:

(Vegan) Coffee Ice Cream

1 can of coconut milk

3 tbs instant coffee – decaf or regular (instant coffee avoids the fine grounds problem)

3 tbs honey or sweetener of your choice (it should be very sweet in its pre-freeze form factor)

Serves two people very hungry for breakfast.


  1. Whisk all the ingredients together.
  2. Heat the mixture slightly until the honey or sweetener is dissolved.
  3. Place the mixture in the fridge and cool thoroughly.
  4. Run through your ice cream maker like normal. Mine took only 15 minutes, and this thing is a klunker from 1979.
  5. Mange!

Yet more lessons we learned on the coffee ice cream journey:

  1. Homemade coconut milk-based ice creams freeze much better than real dairy ice creams. Just take them out of the freezer and let them sit for ten minutes before digging in.
  2. Coconut milk-based ice cream does not taste like coconut milk, at least with this recipe, which just tasted like good ol’ coffee ice cream (hallelujah!) I look forward to trying all kinds of flavors now to see how much the coconut flavor does or does not come through.
  3. And, my favorite lesson: Coffee ice cream should be eaten for breakfast, otherwise, it will keep you awake all night.

Variations on this recipe would include Mocha Chip, in which you would add 1 cup of coarsely chopped chocolate chips to the recipe. If you want to get really fancy, you could top it with raspberry sauce (heat up some frozen raspberries, add sugar, and blender-ize). In this case, you would call it something like Raspberry Mochachino or something equally outlandish to make it taste better and wow your guests with your culinary and verbal prowess.

Coffee Ice Cream

Coffee Ice Cream


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

No-milk Milkshakes

My adoring fans,

My apologies for not updating my site this week. I have been soooooo busy. Fall is nearly upon us here in the PNW, and it’s this time of year that I find myself jumping into a zillion new projects and generally over-committing myself in ways I never imagined. I think it has something to do with being in school until I was 30. It’s a habit.

So here I sit this fine morning eating late summer cantaloupe, bacon, and sipping my hazelnut-honey-coffee treat (I rarely drink coffee), thinking about a bunch of stuff I need to update you on, such as:

  • I went camping this past weekend at Waldo Lake east of Eugene. Uhm, BEAUTIFUL.
    Sunrise over Waldo Lake, Oregon

    Sunrise over Waldo Lake, Oregon

    The Man blowtorching briquets on the new camping hibachi.

    The Man blowtorching briquets on the new camping hibachi.

  • I revised the Rare draft of my novel and decided that it’s actually okay.
  • I’m thinking of starting an online literary journal.
  • I’m planning a xmas holiday. Ideas thus far center around Mendocino or Loreto, Mexico.

But for now, on to the MILKSHAKES!

First, let me say that I hate the word “smoothie.” That word just conjures up for me southern California and being “healthy” (you know, by drinking some sugary-yogurt concoction they poured out of an envelope and into a blender with ice cubes).

But “milkshake,” now there’s a word. “Milkshake” is all Marilyn Monroe and real health, ample North American hips, and homemade ice cream. “Milkshake” is a gorgeous farm girl and the best stuff from 1956, like innocence.

I managed to crawl out of my most recent food funk with the help of a blackberry “milkshake.” This recipe also does nicely in a popsicle form factor. If you experiment with different fruits and flavors, let me know how it goes.

Mel’s Blackberry No-milk Milkshake

1/2 can of coconut milk, works better if it’s been shaken and refrigerated

1/2 bag of frozen blackberries, or fresh if you’ve got ’em (tis the season, after all)

2-3 tbs agave syrup (to your taste)

2 frozen bananas

Basically, just toss all this into a blender and blend until smooth. It’s that easy.

Look at that color!

Look at that color!

Same recipe used for popsicles

Same recipe used for popsicles


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

Pineapple Popsicles

No, I have not fallen off the face of the earth. However, between a long weekend to visit my in-laws and the Olympics, I just haven’t had the time to either a) cook, or b) blog.

In fact, I’m sitting here watching the Olympics right this very second whilst trying to write this post. They’re talking about Michael Phelps’ daily caloric intake: 8,000-10,000 calories per day. I actually can’t even imagine how I could eat that much. I mean, we’re talking cheesecake on the hour, no? Okay, well, maybe I could imagine that.

I did manage to hammer out this recipe sometime last week as I got desperate for more popsicles. I also tested out how agave syrup would freeze. It’s fine, at least in this quantity. My problem with fruit-based popsicles is that they have that crystally thing that a pure coconut milk pop doesn’t have. It’s like the difference between sorbet and ice cream. Personally, I’ve always preferred fat to fruit.

Anyway, I gotta watch the beach volleyball babes kick some butt now.

Pineapple Popsicles

1 can coconut milk

1 c pineapple juice

1/4 c agave syrup

Makes about 8 popsicles

Mix all together and freeze. Pretty darn easy.


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes

Gluten-free Vegan Popsicles That Taste Good

I have this problem with vegan food, which is that it often sucks. I’m sorry, people…shoot me and my blog, but that’s been my experience. And by all means, please send me vegan recipes that don’t suck and that I’m also not totally allergic to (hello, soy!)

I’ve been making these really awesome (vegan) popsicles with coconut milk lately. Here’s the basic recipe:

MJ’s Tasty Popsicle (GF & vegan)

1 can of coconut milk

1/2 c powdered sugar

  1. Mix these two ingredients together and pour into your popsicle-making apparatus. This will make about 5 popsicles, depending on your apparatus.

    Popsicles in vitro

    Popsicles in vitro

  2. Freeze.
  3. Eat.

Here are some variations:

  • For coconut popsicles, add 1 c shredded coconut. Try it toasted, too. Mmmm.
  • For any kind of fruit popsicles, add 1 c sugared-fruit.
  • For cinnamon popsicles, , add 2 tsp cinnamon (these are my current favorite).

Next I want to try:

  • Walnut and/or rum raisin
  • Cherry-chocolate
  • Pineapple
  • Lemon
  • Earl Grey (soak the tea bags in warm coconut milk)
  • Bacon and goat cheese (this is the non-vegan version)
  • Making these without sugar. I have no idea what the freezing properties of agave syrup are, but I intend to find out.

Popsicles are incredibly versatile. And because they are so easy (less than two minutes!), I feel like I just can’t go wrong.

The humble popsicle

The humble popsicle


Filed under Cooking, food, Food allergies, Glorious Food, gluten-free, Gluten-free vegan, ice cream, Recipes