Saturday, 23 April 2016

No-Churn Strawberry & Banana Ice Cream: 4 ingredients and no added sugar

It seems the more I cook, the less I write about cooking.  If you were at school with me, it won't surprise you that I know this concept an inverse proportionality.  I looooved maths.  However, neither my cooking nor my writing is quantifiable enough to allow the involvement of the inverse square rule...

Hello?  Anyone still there? 

Right basically, while blog posts have been notable by their absence, my fridge, dry store and belly have been full to bursting lately.  I've been doing so much experimenting and note-making that my head spins when I lie in bed at night.  Writing about it all would probably do me the world of good.  I 'write' in my head all the time, but my moments of head-space are few and short, interrupted by chores, toddlerisms and general crappy life-min.  What can I say; it's been a long day!

On a cheerier note, the weather here has taken a turn for the better.  Here in the central east of Scotland, we really do experience four seasons in one day.  This morning, for example, the boys had sun hats on at the park one minute before diving under cover from hail stones the next.  No exaggeration.  Generally, though, things seem on the up, triggering the 'taps aff' at a crack of sun phenomenon and the sudden appearance of ice cream vendors from whence there was none.

While I will not be getting my tap aff this side of doomsday (not outside my bedroom anyway), I did join the ice cream brigade in my own, low-guilt way.  This sweet, soft, sickly-pink concoction is creamy, fruity and just the thing for those ten minutes before the hail kicks in...

Banana & Strawberry Ice Cream

makes 6 modest portions or 2 greedy ones

Image for aesthetic purposes only!
Do not freeze fruit before prepping or you risk loss of fingertips.
what you'll need
2 large bananas or 3 small ones, peeled, cut into chunks and frozen
half a cup of strawberries, hulled and frozen
2 TBSP single cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

a food processor with chopping blade attached
a freezer-safe container

what you'll do
  • throw all the ingredients into the food processor
  • pulse until everything comes together and the mixture has the consistency you prefer.  I like a few chunks but you can keep going if you want it super-smooth.
  • transfer the mixture into the container (make sure it's wide - as opposed to deep - enough to allow scoopage later) and freeze for at least a couple of hours
  • scoop and serve!

While you wonder at how I eked this method out into a 4-step 'recipe', I will share with you the wisdom of my ice-creaming experience.  First, do not just bung some whole bananas in the freezer, skin and all.  You will squawk in pain as you try to peel the damn things with icy fingers before hacking through them with your largest knife.  Dum dum.  Same with trimming the strawberries; much easier done before freezing.  (Although they do look good sitting in the sun on a bamboo mat, I reckon...)

Second, make sure to take the ice cream out of the freezer about ten minutes before you're going to eat it.  Easier said than done, I know, but it does save a bit of scooping effort or a cold lap(!)

I have used various recipes before, and if a recipe suggests that you use an ice-cream maker and you don't have one, don't even bother trying it.  I've made plenty of rock hard, crystallised, inedible (who am I kidding - we ate them, they just weren't nice!) blocks of frozen sweet stuff.  This one, however, does work without another small specialist appliance.  There's just no room on my counter!

I'm looking forward to trying this out with loads of other fruits in place of the strawberries.  Both the brambles (that's blackberries to you non-Scots) for awesome colour and the raspberries that grow in abundance round these parts later in the year, perhaps with a squeeze of lemon, would really be summer in a scoop.  From further afield, the prospect of mangos, peaches, blueberries and pineapples all get my mouth watering.  Fingers crossed for a few more sunny days.  And The Big Small has challenged me to make a green one, so look out for my clean, green ice cream, coming soon... 

1 comment:

  1. This is such an epic idea, to mix banans & strawberries! I made banana ice cream few times (sometimes with coconut, some nuts), topped it with basil leaves when serving and it was great.