I know you've all been wondering where the vegan component of this blog equation has gone. No? Just my mom and my sister? Okay well, I have no real excuse except that no one wants to see pictures of me cooking in a dirty kitchen and it seems the kitchen is always in disarray when I set out on a baking adventure. That and my friend Morgan keeps borrowing my camera (I don't ask, I assume it's for something illicit).
And not only have I been horribly negligent to date, this post ISN'T EVEN ABOUT BAKING! I know, crazy. But bear with me because I think this is still worth sharing (even if there are no in-process photos). I've made the most perfect thing in the universe...
Nutella Ice Cream.
Basically every word in that phrase should be in quotes because this contains no cream or Nutella brand chocolate-hazelnut spread but it does the job of getting the point across. And I've made it twice, with some variations and it is knock your socks off good both ways.
I started by making a vegan-style Nutella. You may recall from my Buche de Noel that I was duped into making hazelnut butter from scratch by this recipe. I was not falling for it again and just bought pre-buttered hazelnuts. I used the entire jar of it and added the same amount of cocoa powder and powdered sugar as the truly-from-scratch version. This makes enough notNutella to make 2 batches of ice cream and still have plenty left over to slather on anything you put in your mouth for a week. Mmmm...nutella toothbrush.
First batch (not pictured), was a chocolate notNutella ice cream. I was horrified to find most chocolate ice cream recipes call for cocoa powder. Seriously? To make ice cream, you already have a saucepan full of warm milk-like-substance. Isn't this the perfect place to gently melt some actual chocolate? Of course it is.
Let me back up a bit. Your standard vegan ice cream base goes like this:
3 cups of your choice fake milk (soy, almond, coconut, etc.)
3/4 c sugar
pinch of salt
2 Tbsp arrowroot powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
You use 1/4 c of the fake-milk to make a slurry with the arrowroot powder. Set that aside. Heat up the remaining fake-milk with the sugar and pinch of salt. This is also when you incorporate whatever other flavoring you want in there (i.e: blueberry puree, strawberry puree, chocolate, etc). Let that come to a low boil then pull off the heat and stir in the slurry. It will thicken very quickly. Then toss in the vanilla. Let that chill in your fridge for a few hours and then process it in your ice cream maker per its instructions.
Okay, back to the specifics. I melted 8 oz of semi-sweet chocolate into the base of my first batch as well as adding about 1/4 c of the notNutella. In the second batch (pictured), I used about 1/2 cup of the nutella only for flavoring. In both cases, I used a mix of hazelnut milk and full-fat coconut milk as my base. I've found if you keep the ratio of coconut milk to less than half, it doesn't taste so much like coconut flavored ice cream. Once chilled, I processed away in my awesome, sister-given ice cream maker. It comes out very soft-servy and can always benefit from an overnight in the freezer. When transferring from the ice cream maker to its temporary freezer container, layer in generous amounts of the remaining nutella so there is a ribbon of fudgy goodness running through your ice cream.
One last note, it is good to let your ice cream get a bit melty before serving or eating. It really makes a huge difference. Also, super cute bowls from Anthropologie, like these but wee-er, not only make the scoop feel more like an occasion, but keep you from eating too much in one sitting.