I’m not a coffee drinker.
I’ll admit it – the dark black caffeinated water never appealed to me. Somehow I manage to wake up and begin the day without the siren call of caffeine. Unlike most of my family and friends I never grew to like coffee. My mother says I just haven’t ‘gown up yet’ – because that’s what grown ups drink. Coffee.
Even as a student when I began university I never crossed over to the dark side. I would always see my friends and other students clutching their mugs full of the black stuff. It was a life-saver; the only way you could possibly make it through those 8 am classes, midterms and final exams. Somehow I made it through just fine sans coffee. I wasn’t even a tea drinker – just good ol’ fashioned water.
When I was in my first year of university a friend and I were studying some cue cards before our midterm. She had bought chocolate-covered coffee beans and was snacking on them as we memorized our biology terms. Thinking nothing of it, I started snacking on them too because I like chocolate-covered things.
I felt my heart rate spike.
Being a non-caffeine person the introduction of it, and the whole bean nonetheless, began to make its way through my veins. By the time I was on the last question of the midterm I was buzzing. I think I was writing answers before I read the question. It was the fastest I had written a midterm. I stayed away from chocolate-covered coffee beans after that.
However, I have a weird taste for coffee-flavoured items. Cake? Brownies? Blended drinks? Ice-Cream? Yea, I like those things to taste like coffee.
Luckily, I live with one of those silly coffee drinkers. Thankfully he takes his coffee black; none of that fancy stuff. So when I do have a craving for coffee-flavoured confections I have a bag of beans close by.
On the bright side, I never have to ‘stop for a coffee,’ wait in those ridiculously long line-ups outside of Starbucks, Tim Hortons or the McDonald’s drive through to get my fix. I can start my day without putting a fresh pot on, and I can function fine if I haven’t had my regular cup of jo. Also, I can sleep just fine knowing I didn’t just spend 6$ on a cup of overpriced coffee.
Since school has started I wonder if I’ll cross over to the dark side eventually. As a teacher on call I might get the call at 5:30 am, but it hasn’t happened yet. Maybe one day.
I’d rather get my caffeine fix by eating something like coffee flavoured ice cream. You can even make it decaffeinated by using decaf coffee beans.
I sort of just tried out this recipe not knowing if it would work or not but I’m glad it did. I just had a day when I felt I needed a jolt of coffee.
As usual, it’s Dairy-Free and I only added maybe a 1/4 cup of sugar. I like coffee flavoured things to be a little less sweet, more like a shot of espresso – strong taste and a little bitter. Although this is still sweet because of the coconut milk.
Vegan Coffee Ice Cream
Vegan - Wheat Free - Dairy Free
- 2 cans full fat coconut milk
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- 1 1/2 cups whole coffee beans
- scant 1/4 cup sugar (can use coconut sugar)
- 1/2 Tbs. vanilla
- 1 Heat the coconut milk, sugar and coffee beans in medium sized sauce pan until it is quite warm and steamy, but be sure that it does not boil. Once the mixture is warm, cover and remove from the heat. Let the mixture steep at room temperature for 1 hour.
- 3 Reheat the coconut milk and coffee mixture, on medium heat, until warm and steaming, not boiling. Add the 1/4 cup almond milk and the vanilla, stirring it in.
- 4 Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a whisk until mixture thickens up a bit, about 8-10 minutes.
- 5 Pour the coconut milk mixture through a mesh strainer over a medium sized bowl. Push around the coffee beans in the strainer with a spoon to extract as much of the coffee flavor as possible. Then discard the beans.
- 6 Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours or overnight, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
- Store leftovers in container in freezer.
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/
I have a passion for Bananas. You might say I’m a connoisseur. We usually have one or two large bunches in the house at all times. I love them on their own, sliced over warm oatmeal, mixed in with cool cereal, over ice cream (even banana ice cream), in cookies, as a substitute for butter in many baking recipes, and even in brownies. You might say Banana’s are one of my favourite fruits. I think they’re tied with apples. I feel like apples and bananas are just a given staple in our house, we’re never without either of them. Ok, well maybe not true for this week.
Adam sold his truck last week, so he’s been taking my car to work (since I’m only at school a few days a week). This means during the day I have no car. Although, we live right across from an outdoor shopping centre/mall that I can easily walk to if we actually needed anything. It’s funny, I thought I’d be over there everyday when we first moved in, and much to Adam’s surprise, and probably relief, I don’t go over that often. Maybe once every two-three weeks I’ll walk over and shop (it’s not as hard as I though it’d be to live across from an H&M haha.) This is probably because I’m so busy anyways to even have time to stroll over and peruse.
I have been trying, and I mean trying not to go overboard with buying groceries. I was feeling like we were throwing away a lot of produce at the end of the week because it wasn’t getting eaten. And I wasn’t happy about it (although we do compost all organics.) I tried to blame Adam, because really he won’t make himself food unless I’ve already prepared it. He only eats breakfast at home, lunch at work, and then I make dinner. However, if there is produce etc in the fridge and he’s hungry, he’d rather not go to the hassle of making an entire meal, and opt for something like an apple or bowl of cereal if I’m not making something. He’s not a fan of cooking. So, a lot of the food doesn’t get eaten. And I’m home most of the day now that school is out, and my classes are later in the day. I only really eat a small breakfast and a smoothie, so I’m not making a huge meal other than dinner. But when it comes to dinner it is always heavy on the veggies. But still, I was finding I was throwing out some bad lettuce or even kale, tomatoes, cucumber etc. that I had bought too much of in anticipation of eating it during the week.
I think it’s also our schedules. Lately, I’ve had baseball Monday night, Tuesday and Wednesday I have classes until late, and then Thursday I might have baseball again. So, we’re not home for dinner a few nights each week. Which means, lots of veggies get left. Weekend are usually ok, because we’ll make dinner Friday, Saturday and Sunday at home.
In the end, I’ve realized I have to buy less groceries. Even though Adam can eat a lot. Usually we’ll just go up to the produce market or the butcher shop that night if we want to make a specific meal. Now, I do love meal planning, and I always have some idea of what I want to make that week, but I won’t buy all the items just in case we actually don’t get around to having time for dinner that week.
I have to say, it’s actually nice not to have to go on a big grocery run, or think I had ‘better go buy that.’ It’s against my usual habits, but I think I’ll get used to buying less. And hey – even better, less money, and no money/food wasted, which was my biggest concern, wasting food.
Do you do a big grocery shop at the beginning of each week? Or do you buy-as-you-go for meals, and pick up that day?
One thing I never worry about really is fruit. If it’s starting to brown, it goes in the freezer. And when it comes to Bananas, you can never waste them. If they’re really brown/starting to brown, they either get sliced up for banana ice cream, whole for banana bread, or for smoothies and put in the freezer.
And even better – 2-Ingredient Peanut Butter Banana Ice cream. My new favourite combination.
It’s super easy, and can be prepped well in advance, and kept in the freezer for up to a month. For summer I think I’ll have a batch in the freezer each week for a quick healthy, yet satisfying, sweet frozen treat to beat the heat.
2-Ingredient Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
*Wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, vegan*
- 4 Medium ripe bananas
- 1-2 Tbsp. All Natural Peanut Butter
Slice your bananas, and place into a plastic freezer bag. Make sure they are in a single layer, and lay flat in the freezer. Allow to freeze overnight, or up to a week.
Remove frozen banana slices from freezer and place in food processor.
Turn food processor on and blend bananas, stopping to scrape down when needed. This will take about 5 minutes. Pulse if you need to, and stop to scrape down the sides so the chunks all get mixed int.
Allow to blend until smooth. When it is all blended, add in the Peanut Butter. Pulse again until completely mixed.
You can eat it like this, soft serve, or, transfer ice cream to a plastic tupperware container and return to freezer. Freeze at least 3-4 hours, or longer before serving. Keep leftovers in the freezer.
It finally began to feel like summer this weekend! Which is awesome, because it’s only Spring. After a very rainy and dreary April it was nice to get some hot weather our way.
We headed down to the States on Friday to spend the weekend with Adam and his family at Maple Falls. The only thing wrong with the weekend was the hour and ten minute wait at the border going down. However, luckily for us it was about a 5 minutes wait coming home.
We took advantage of the glorious weather and went bike riding, swimming and walking in the sun.
We biked into Maple Falls and discovered some new trails, including a road that lead us to this sight.
We rode up to to see a large building on fire surrounded by fire trucks. We asked a bystander what was going on and they said it was a controlled practice burn. Turns out it used to be the old elementary school but due to asbestos and the age of the building it had to be taken down. This was also a practice run for soon-to-be firemen who were getting used to the water nozzles. They weren’t allowed in the building because of the safety hazards.
It was sure a sight to see, and we were quite close to it actually. There was a basketball court not too far that some kids were playing at, and some neighbours had brought out their lawn chairs to witness the burning. It was already super hot out Saturday morning, and standing next to a giant blaze made it even hotter.
We rode over to the gas station to get some refreshments.
And later after swimming, some leftover brownie with ice cream and strawberries. Refreshing – definitely hit the spot.
We took our niece for a walk with Lainey, but after a little while Lainey decided she had enough walking in the heat – so we gave her a little lift in the buggy. At first she wasn’t sure about it, having to push her into it, but after a moment she realized how much better it was and decided to get nice and comfy for the ride.
Another way to cool off? Banana Ice Cream.
This one-ingredient ice cream was all the rage last year, with someone even making a banana ice cream maker (which, really, is sort of ridiculous). All you need is some ripe bananas, and a food processor.
I had made it last year, but for some reason I wasn’t quite sold on it. Maybe it was the bananas or the fact that I think I made it in a blender – but I didn’t love it.
However, having made it again now with a food processor I really, really, love it.
I was looking for something to make last week with the ripe bananas on the counter, something that wasn’t banana bread or muffins. And actually, these banana’s were already frozen in my freezer – so I still had ripe bananas on the counter to use up (and I did, i’ll share that later). I had thrown a bunch of ripe bananas in the freezer to use in smoothies, but hadn’t used them yet.
It’s naturally sugar free, raw, vegan, and all other allergens-free ice cream. Unless you’re allergic to Bananas, then I feel very sorry for you.
The key to making banana ice cream is:
- Ripe bananas. You don’t want mushy, brown or gooey bananas, however. You want the banana peels to be spotted, but the banana’s themselves still good looking with few or no spots. The sugars will have just started to break down, making them sweeter, but the banana is still firm. This will give it a better consistency when making ice cream.
- Freeze them thoroughly. I’ve seen people do this with banana’s frozen for a half hour or so, but my banana’s had been in ziplock bags for at least a month – Now, I’m sure you don’t want to wait that long, but toss your cut up ripe banana in a bag and wait a few days, even a week until you make it. If they aren’t frozen enough the texture will be too runny. Slice them up, freeze them on a cookie sheet in a single layer and then transfer them to a plastic bag to freeze further.
- Food processor. If you don’t have one you can try a blender but I’m not sure how it will work out texture wise, you might need to add a little liquid to get it moving around in a blender.
And that’s it. Banana Ice Cream.
First becomes a crumbly texture
Next, it’ll begin smoothing out. I had to scrape it down a few times to get the mixture going again because it will start to ‘cluster’ up
And finally, smooth, delicious soft serve banana ice cream
You can also transfer to a container and freeze for hard ice cream
Banana Ice Cream
- 3-4 ripe bananas, sliced and frozen thoroughly
Remove frozen banana slices from freezer and place in food processor.
Turn food processor on and blend bananas, stopping to scrape down when needed.
Allow to blend until smooth. You can eat the ice cream as a soft serve, or freeze in container to harden.
Feel free to add in:
- Almond Butter
- Peanut Butter
- Chocolate Chips
What’s even better?
How about a Banana Ice Cream Sandwich with Gluten Free/Wheat Free/Dairy Free chocolate chip cookies - A totally Dairy free, Lactose Free and allergy free ice cream sandwich! Perfect for warmer weather. I suggest using a ‘non’ stuffed cookie with this one.
The banana chocolate chip cookie combo is definitely amazing.
To make the ice cream cookie sandwich, spoon banana ice cream on a cookie, top with another cookie then wrap in tin foil and freeze for 10-20 minutes before eating. Or, eat immediately for a slightly messier ice cream sandwich.