avocado ice cream
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For the (weird) people who don’t like ice cream, desserts, chocolate, cake, cookies or pudding I have a real treat today: avo ice. You might think that I’m just riding the hipster avocado wave as having occupied toasts, pasta and smoothies the wretched fruit is crawling towards dessert. You are very much free to think so, but I have actually been making this thing since about 2009, when ‘hipster’ solely referred to jeans.
I called it something else then: guacamole sorbet. I thought it wasn’t ice cream really as it had no dairy in it, though fatty avocado does freeze nicely, without forming ice shards. Which is exactly where ice cream makers step into action: breaking up the ice crystals as they simultaneously freeze the mix. The beauty of this recipe is – you don’t need ice cream machine. If you have one of those little wizzy chopper-blenders, you’re in.
In fact I’d argue that it’s better all round – the hassle of giving it a blitz every hour or so notwithstanding – because you can make small amounts of ice cream, different flavours at a time. Obviously, if you have a large, same flavour ice cream loving family, a machine is very useful, but I’m talking me, The Weather Man and a friend who’d sell his soul for ice cream I usually churn it for.
Back to sorbet: having made it and tasted this time, I decided it’s nothing like sorbet, which invariably tastes like – delicious and flavoured, but – water. The avo makes it creamier than that so there we have it.
When and how to eat it? Apart from the above mentioned (weird) people who might want it for dessert, I’d say it’s an excellent and quirky starter, so chalk it up for a summer dinner party. Me, I just keep a tub in the freezer and have some for lunch, with tortilla chips.
avocado ice creamServings: a pint of ice creamTime: 15 minutes plus freezing
- 2 limes
- 3 tsp sugar
- 2 jalapeno peppers
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 2 tsp salt
- ½ tsp coarse black pepper
- 2 spring onions, trimmed
- ½ bunch coriander
- 2 large ripe avocados
- 1 tbsp. honey
- cherry tomatoes
- 1 red chili pepper
1. Juice one and a half lime, reserve a half. (Tip: microwave the limes for 30 seconds; they’ll juice much better.) Pour the juice into a small saucepan with the sugar and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 5 minutes until it thickens a little. Leave to cool.
2. In the meantime core and de-seed the jalapenos, chop them roughly and grind with the salt and pepper in a pestle and mortar to smooth paste.
3. Chop the spring onions and the coriander, leaves and stalks, very finely. Transfer them to a small blender or chopper, ideally one that will fit in your freezer. (Alternatively mix everything in a bowl with a stick blender and continue to freeze in the bowl and blend with the stick blender.) Blitz briefly, add the jalapeno paste and blitz again.
4. Stone the avocados and scoop the flesh out into the blender. Add the honey, drizzle in the lime syrup and whiz briefly. Taste it now and adjust seasoning – it must blow you away with the salty, spicy and sweet because all the flavours will be dulled when frozen.
5. Place the blender bowl with the mix in the freezer for 2 hours. Take it out three to four times at an hour’s intervals and whiz briefly again until it’s nearly frozen through. After the last spin scrape the mix into a plastic container and keep in the freezer.
6. Slice the remaining half a lime, a cherry tomato and some deseeded red chili very thinly, freeze it on a plate and serve with the ice cream.
7. The ice cream needs to be taken out of the freezer to room temperature about 10 minutes before serving or moved to the fridge 20 minutes before.