I’ve been allergic to cow’s milk for as long as I can remember and to soya milk for almost as long. It's something that no longer bothers me, I've got used to asking for alternatives at restaurants and not being able to eat pizza when I go out for dinner, but growing up I wasn't quite so okay with it. It felt like a huge problem and the biggest thing was always ice cream.
When I was little ice cream seemed like such a treat. My family would only have it on special occasions; when we went out for dinner or were on holiday. Me? I (if I was lucky) could get sorbet. Try telling an 8 year old that their lemony ice is just as nice as their three sisters’ chocolate ice cream … I can guarantee tantrums were thrown.
It’s only relatively recently that dairy (and soy) free ice creams have become available in Supermarkets. My absolute favourite is chocolate Booja Booja, which tastes seriously incredible and is made from just water, agave, cashew nuts and cocoa. I would even go as far to say that you could give it to dairy chocolate ice cream fiend and they wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. The only downside? It’s majorly expensive. Perfect for the odd treat but not something I can have regularly stocked in the freezer.
So I knew I needed to come up with an alternative.
Now if you’re vegan or are just generally into trying to eating more fruits and veggies there is a good chance that you have come across ‘banana ice cream’ before. It's a really simple idea; blend frozen banana chunks with a little almond milk until they create a thick, cold and delicious ‘ice cream’. Well this recipe takes that idea and steps it up a notch. The cacao nibs add an amazing crunch, and the maple syrup and cashew butter add creaminess and flavour.
I am so seriously in love with this recipe. I can’t wait to try out more flavour ideas and variations. But for now I hope you love this. Eat up kiddies.
Chop the bananas into slices, place into sandwich bags and freeze for at least 8 hours.
Once frozen place into a blender/ food processor.
Measure out the cashew butter, cinnamon, vanilla, and maple and add to the blender also.
Blend the mixture together until it becomes a thick, smooth, creamy texture (you may need too occasionally scrape down the sides of the blender to help it along).
Empty the mix into a large bowl and mix in the chocolate chips/ cacao nibs*
Pour this into a container and pop back in the freezer for a few hours to set.
Remove from the freezer for about 5 minutes before serving to allow to the ice cream to soften. Then scoop up and serve alone or with your favourite things!
*you can serve the ice cream immediately here. It will be less frozen but still very creamy and delicious