It has been a hot summer in Buffalo. After the long winter we had this year, it’s definitely welcomed, but it has been hot, none the less. It’s hard to get motivated to cook or bake some days, but I have been doing the best I can. I can’t say that every meal is necessarily blog worthy, some nights I just toss together a leafy green salad with all the goodies from our garden and we just pop home-made pre-frozen veggie burgers in the toaster oven, not exactly cooking but a healthy home-made meal either way.
I am still really trying to enjoy creating and “cooking” any way I can, even if that means never turning the oven or stove top on. One of the best things about the summer are the fun sweets you can make with all the fresh fruit at the farmers market. Besides the muffins and smoothies, there really is nothing better in the summer heat than an icy cold, sweet ice cream treat. As much as I love a classic, custard based ice cream, sometimes I just don’t have the time, patience and energy for all of it. Plus, I tend to have a bit of guilt after enjoying a bowl of it. Sure the ice cream I make at home is all fresh and local ingredients, organic and healthier than the gross dairy queen stuff that they can’t even call ice cream, but it’s a lot more fat than I would prefer to have on a regular basis.
This is where vegan ice cream steps in. I have made quite a few versions of my vegan ice creams and each time I make one I am just as amazed as the first time at the amount of flavor and the creaminess of the ice cream, considering there isn’t a bit of dairy or any egg in there.
This recipe is a bit different from the others that I have made since it is just coconut milk, I didn’t add in almond milk or any other non-dairy milk. I really wanted the coconut flavor this time.
The key is to use the full-fat coconut milk, not the reduced fat kind. You want the creaminess from the fat. The fresh slightly tart apricot flavor was so perfect with the creamy coconut flavor. If you wanted to take the time you could chop up some fresh apricot to add in just before you add the ice cream to the maker and you could also toast up some shredded coconut to top each serving with. I was far too hot and lazy to do either of these things. It was unnecessary either way, but would make for a nice presentation if you are making this for dinner guests.
It was so hot on the day that I was photographing this ice cream, that it was melting much faster than I could take the photos. I took the photos as quickly as I could, then promptly sat down and ate the bowl of ice cream. Guilt free.
Ironically as I typed up this recipe, it was one of the coolers days we’ve had in some time. It has been a lovely cloudy and rainy day, that I was quite happy to see. I am sure my veggies growing out back were likely just as happy as I was to see some rain fall.
Vegan Coconut Apricot Ice Cream
2 – 14 ounce cans organic full-fat coconut milk
1 pound fresh apricots, pitted and halved
1/2 cup honey or agave syrup (you could also use organic raw cane sugar)
1-2 tablespoons vodka*
Place the coconut milk, apricots and honey in a blender and puree for about 1 minute until fully blended.
Pour the mixture in a large bowl, stir in the vodka. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours until fully chilled. Once chilled, make according to your ice cream maker‘s instructions. I find that putting the ice cream in the freezer for at least an hour after to allow it to get a bit harder is best. Pull it out a few minutes before serving, scoop and enjoy!
* this keeps the ice cream from over-freezing and being completely hard, a little tip I learned from David Lebovitz – you can substitute any other un-flavored liquor, or have fun with flavored liquor like Grand Marnier or Armagnac, etc.