Many people don't know this about me, but my uncle Wendall used to work for Baskin and Robbins. I'm not sure what his job title was, but basically he worked in marketing and invented ice cream flavors. All I really remember about him was that he was very kind, that he died when I was young (long before his wife), and wore ties with ice cream cones and sundaes on them. He also played some role in the original marketing of Tofutti, though I'm not really sure what. I'd like to think if he were still around today, he would read our blog and at least enjoy the creativity. I'd also like to think he would approve of what we did with the maiden run of our new ice cream maker.
Ever since we found Lula's Sweet Apothecary, we've been talking about making cashew ice cream. I think our first try at this clever frozen treat has been heavenly, as well as (kinda) healthy. It has all the warm flavor and spice of our almond Chai drink recipe, and compliments the flavor of the cashews rather than trying to hide it, sort of like a good friendship. It brings out the best in everyone.
We're dedicating this one to all our fallen homies who loved ice cream, but belonged to a generation that didn't get a chance to try the cashew version.
Chai Tea Cashew Ice Cream
- 2 Cups Raw Cashews
- 1 Banana (ripe)
- 4 Tablespoons Pumpkin Puree
- 1 1/4 Cup Water
- 3 Bags Organic Darjeeling Tea (We always try to buy everything organic, but if you can only choose a few products to buy Organic, make Tea one of them. There is such a difference in flavor and quality. Can't stress it enough.)
- 1 Tablespoon Coconut Milk
- 1 Tablespoon Vanilla
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground Cardamom
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 2 Pinches of Ground Black Peppercorn
- 1/4 Cup Agave Nectar
Follow the instructions for your ice cream maker. You might need ice and salt or to freeze a gel core overnight, so it's important to know what you need to get or do before you start.
Soak your Raw Cashews overnight (10 to 12 hours) in a deep bowl. Then in your food processor, blend your Cashews for 5-8 minutes until they become a smooth paste. Stop the machine a few times to scrape the sides. I know it's hard to be patient, and it will seem like forever, but it's worth it to get the right texture.
In a saucepan, heat the Water to a rapid boil over medium heat. Then add the Tea Bags and reduce heat to a simmer. Let simmer for 5 minutes. Then remove Tea Bags. Stir in the Agave Nectar, Cinnamon, Cardamon, Cloves and Peppercorns and heat to a boil. Once it starts to boil, remove the saucepan from heat.
Pour your Tea into the blended Cashews, then add the Banana, Pumpkin Puree, Vanilla and Coconut Milk in the food processor and blend for another 2 minutes until it is completely mixed.
Pour into your ice cream maker and turn it on. Ours took 30 minutes to make, but I know some others take longer. Sorry - you're going to have to check your ice cream make instructions.
The one serving tip I will share is to stress the importance of investing in a good ice cream scoop. You'll be happy you did.