Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Vanilla Salted Caramel Ice Cream. Vegan and Gluten-free

Ahhh, ice cream. Even better: salty and sweet ice cream. The combination of salty and sweet is one of my favorites. I love taking a bite and not knowing exactly what it will taste like.

Also, in case you were wondering, I use this Kitchenaid ice cream attachment for my stand mixer. It works great - during the summer, I keep the bowl frozen in the freezer so that any time I'm in the mood for ice cream, I can grab it and make a refreshingly cool treat immediately. 

I finally ate the last of this last night, and I'm really sad that it's gone. It was the perfect ending to the last weeks' worth of dinners.

I guess I'll just have to make some more.

I am a firm believer that ice cream is appropriate at any time of year, even when it's -20' outside (although it never gets quite that cold here in the Pacific Northwest), but it is especially precious and fulfilling when the sun is blaring and you've been playing outside all day.

I promise you, this is an ice cream that will knock your socks off. Try and only have one bowl.

I mean it. Just try it.

I created this caramel sauce after reading the book Ratio, which I've already gushed about. I can't gush about it nearly enough. It really is worth a read, especially if you fancy yourself any type of cook in the kitchen. The basic ratio for caramel sauce is another simple one:

One part sugar to one part cream. 

Take that and run. Or just make the one I created below.

Salted Caramel Sauce
Makes ~14 oz.

1 c. sugar
1 c. coconut cream
1 1/2 t. sea salt

Pour the sugar and just enough water to dissolve it into a small stovetop pan. Heat on medium until it is dissolved and starting to turn brown. Bring it to a gentle boil and, stirring occasionally, wait until it is amber-colored. Pour in the cream and salt and remove it from the heat, whisking until all ingredients are fully mixed.

Make the caramel sauce first, then, while it's cooling in the fridge, make the ice cream. See below for the final assembly instructions.

Vanilla Ice Cream (adapted from A Vegan Ice Cream Paradise)
Makes about 1 1/2 pints

2 c. coconut milk
2 c. almond milk
1 whole vanilla bean
3/4 c. sugar
2 T. cornstarch

  1. Mix 1/4 cup of almond milk with the cornstarch and set aside. Mix the two milks together in a saucepan. Slit the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the milk. Drop the whole bean into the milk. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Remove the vanilla bean shell (it may have disintegrated a bit, so make sure you fish out all the parts). Stir in the sugar and bring the mixture to a boil once again. When it starts boiling, remove it from the heat and stir in the cornstarch slurry. 
  3. Cool in the fridge for a few hours. When it is sufficiently chilled, freeze it according to your ice cream maker's instructions. Add it to a freezer-proof container about a cup at a time, pouring a bit of the caramel sauce over each layer each time. Top with a final layer of vanilla ice cream. Before serving, it must be defrosted at least 20 minutes.
This post is linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free.

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