In preparation for the warm weather, I decided to dust off my beloved ice cream maker and get to work creating a new ice cream flavor you guys. And I hate to brag, but this Date Ice Cream with Toasted Almonds is fantastic! The dates are naturally sweet and caramelly (now an adjective), and the toasted walnuts, cinnamon, and vanilla impart their own subtle flavors that round out this perfectly creamy dessert. Add some freshly toasted almonds, and you have arrived at dessert heaven!
I got the idea for this ice cream flavor from a food magazine I was reading that mentioned a California store that is famous for its date milkshakes. I was intrigued because I love a soft Medjool date when I’m craving something sweet.
I messed around with some ingredients, blended until smooth, turned on the ice cream maker, and — viola! — this glorious date ice cream was born!
When it comes to making ice cream, Abby seems to have a sixth sense. We don’t eat much ice cream at our house, but if we do, Abby senses it and comes running. So when I made a second batch of this date ice cream for the photo shoot, she insisted on “helping” me. How sweet.
Abby gives this date ice cream two sticky thumbs up!
As a mom, I’m okay with letting Abby have small portions of my vegan ice creams because they’re dairy-free, don’t contain refined sugar, and usually are a decent source of nutrients (See: Black Sesame Ice Cream, Red Bean Ice Cream, & Golden Spice Cream). They’re still high in fat though, so limit yourself to one small scoop per serving.
- 1 13.5-oz. can full-fat coconut milk
- 1 5.4-oz can coconut cream (or the top half of another can coconut milk)
- 8 soft Medjool dates, pits and stem caps removed
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 1 T. vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- ½ cup walnut pieces, lightly toasted*
- Fat pinch of salt
- ½ cup almond slices or slivers, toasted
- Blend all ingredients except almonds in a high-speed blender until smooth. You will see a few brown specks.
- Place blender and its contents in the fridge to chill at least one hour.
- Before pouring ice cream mixture into the freezer bowl, I like to turn on the blender for a few seconds just to recombine the ingredients in case separation occurred. Turn on your ice cream maker and freeze per manufacturer's instructions.
- When the ice cream reaches soft-serve consistency, spoon it into a loaf pan or glass container and place it in the freezer at least two hours.
- Remove ice cream from freezer about 10 minutes before serving to allow it to soften slightly. Scoop and sprinkle with toasted almonds.
If your dates seem very firm, you should soften them by soaking them in warm water about an hour, or steaming them for a few minutes before blending.
Are there any other fun flavors I should try?