We all scream for ice cream!…
Hello everyone! You all know I love everything about food; cooking, creating recipes, even grocery shopping! These are some of my favorite past times. I first began writing a food blog to show people it is possible to live a happy, healthy gluten free lifestyle, with an emphasis on living. When I was first diagnosed with Celiac Disease, I felt like my life was being ripped out from under me. Something as basic as eating was suddenly a challenge. I began avoiding food related gatherings. I ostracized myself from my family and friends. My breakthrough came when I stopped looking at all the foods I could not eat, and instead began focusing on what I could eat. I now consider Celiac’s to be one of the best things to happen to my culinary life. Without it, I never would have dreamed of eating Quinoa or Kale. I never would have known the joy of smelling fresh bread baking. I never would have learned just how strong and beautiful my body is. My life did not end two and half years ago when I was diagnosed with Celiac’s. It finally began!
Now, back to the food part…
If you are anything like me, summer evenings mean one thing…. ICE CREAM!
As a gluten free, dairy free girl with a penchant for clean eating, I naturally prefer to make my own ice cream. About one month ago, I received the best surprise of the summer. I returned from a trip to find a rather large box on my doorstep. This box contained none other than a Cuisinart Frozen Yogurt Ice Cream and Sorbet Maker!
I began experimenting, searching the Internet, and perusing cookbooks for dairy free ice cream recipes. Many of the recipes I found required stovetop cooking, then cooling, then processing in the ice cream maker, than freezing again…. You get the picture. I may love cooking, but this all seemed a bit excessive to me. I decided to take a more simplistic approach. At first, my creations were too icy or bland and tasteless. I tried various dairy substitutes before settling on Coconut Milk. My favorite brand is Native Forest Organic Unsweetened Coconut Milk.
I also tried various sweeteners ranging from Agave Nectar to simple Bananas. In the end, I found plain, old sugar best replicated the creamy consistency found in dairy ice creams. The “big breakthrough” occurred when I discovered Xanthum Gum. Xanthum Gum is the key to perfect, creamy, dairy free ice cream without having to heat the ingredients on the stove. I’m not sure how it does it, but it creates magic! My basic, “go-to” recipe was formed! It can be adapted to nearly any flavor under the sun! Just be sure to eat it quickly. Sun causes ice cream to melt!
Gidget’s Go-To Ice Cream Base
– 2 cans Full, Fat Unsweetend Coconut Milk
– 3/4 cup Sugar
– 2 teaspoons Flavored Extract (vanilla, peppermint, coffee, coconut, etc…)
– 1/4 teaspoon Xanthum Gum
Combine these ingredients in a blender.
Place entire blender canister in the freezer for one hour and allow to set.
After one hour, briefly re-blend ice cream mixture (about 45 seconds).
Pour mixture into you ice cream maker and follow manufacturer instructions.
I process mine for about 25 minutes before scooping into a freezer safe container and allowing to harden for about 1 hour.
Various mix-ins can be added to this recipe.
– chocolate chips
– crushed oreo style cookies (Kinnitoos for gluten/dairy free)
– frozen, softened fruit
– coconut flakes
You can enjoy your ice cream straight out of the machine if you enjoy soft serve. Personally, I prefer mine to have a firmer consistency, so I allow it to harden for at least one hour.
Here are a few of my creations so far:
Who knows what I will create next? The sky is the limit!