Its seventy degrees with a breeze as I’m running on the sidewalk, down to the running path. There are lush trees and bushes of flowers on either side of me. I can hear the bees buzzing to my left and right, and the birds calling to one another from the canopies above. Occasionally I pass a yard worker. He turns off his mower, steps to the side, while smiling and waving good morning to me as I run by. “What a cheery, considerate person”, I think to myself. My internal “joy” meter goes up a few points, and I continue along. Finally I reach her, the Newport Back Bay. She is vast and blue, with brownish green slopes and dots of palm trees surrounding her. I spy a crane walking through the shallow water, and wave as smiling bicyclists and runners pass me on the trail. I give the bay a big hug with my eyes and turn around, its time to run back home, but the journey was well worth those few moments of sea breeze and beauty.
As I’m running home I’m thinking of lunch, and realizing we are low on a few items of produce. Rather than turning left when I reach our street, I turn right, crossing over to Tanaka Farms. I walk the dusty, dirt path up to the farm stand. When standing in the tarp-covered stand you have a clear one hundred and eighty degree view of the fields. Kale, sweet lettuces, chard, broccoli, and rows upon rows of juicy strawberries. I stuff a few bags of broccoli, grab an oversized carton of the reddest strawberries I’ve ever seen, and head to the checkout counter. I walk home, belly empty and arms full. Thinking of my soon to be delicious lunch, I smile. I just ran outside in perfect weather, felt the sea breeze, and am walking home from the farm with arms full of organic, local produce. I’m counting my blessings today. Every last one.
ABOUT THE COOKBOOK
If the idea of gorgeous, fresh produce prepared in ways that will make your mouth melt throughout the seasons gets you excited, The Love & Lemons Cookbook will make you weak in the knees. Jeanine shares her pantry essentials, and backwards meal planning tips in the beginning – getting your mind whizzing about all the ways to incorporate these brilliant ideas into your everyday. Then the recipes begin, and your mouth drops. The book is organized unlike any other I’ve ever possessed – alphabetically, by produce type. So you begin with apples, and end with zucchini. Each produce’s section contains a handful of inspiring recipes to follow (and tweak!). Everything from tacos to salads to ice creams. All with the most stunning graphic design to boot. There are carrot waffles, shiitake BLTs, sweet potato nachos, and even vegan french toast! In the midst of the overwhelming desire to make every single recipe, my eyes (stomach) were drawn to a purple-y frozen treat, the Blueberry Mango & Mint Ice Cream. Read more about this tasty recipe below, and be sure to pop down beneath the recipe for details on how to enter to win a copy of this gem of a book! Also, see more L&L cookbook love around the web: creamy miso pasta, portobello burgers, carrot gasztpacho, and coconut rice with brussels sprouts.
ABOUT THE RECIPE
This ice cream is rich, creamy, perfectly sweet, with layers of flavor that will have you making multiple batches in a week (guilty, but also oh-so-winning). This ice cream reminds me of a special childhood treat. Clues: it was purple, sherbet-like, and you pushed it through a tube. Got it? Flintstone’s push-ups! Specifically that Bedrock Berry. But this version is way better, and better for you of course. Still though, you better bet I’m googling where to find those push-up containers to fill with this ice cream for summertime vibes in a few months. When in a cup, I like my serving just slightly melty around the edges, digging around the frozen center with my spoon. I love the sweet mango flavor in the midst of the creamy coconut and blueberries, but I think my favorite flavor-level of all is the fresh mint. Oh that fresh mint. Unlike any mint flavoring you’ll find, those leaves taste so herb-y and refreshing. Very different than the extracts most of us know. If you make this ice cream (please do!) make sure to include the fresh mint, its a vital level of flavor in this recipe. Yay for warmer months and frozen treats! I hope you’re week is full of joy and melty ice creams – xo.
Recipe Notes: I substituted the fresh blueberries with frozen, and the fresh mango with 1 cup of diced frozen mango. It turned out incredible, and processed a bit faster than normal in my ice cream maker. I also list below the maple sugar I use to keep this processed sugar free, however, in the cookbook Jeanine uses cane sugar. Use whichever you prefer. I would think coconut sugar would work lovely too. I also list arrowroot starch below, while in the cookbook she lists cornstarch. It was just what I happen to have on hand and worked wonderfully. Use whichever you have.
BLUEBERRY MANGO & MINT ICE CREAM
Makes 4 servings.
2 (14 ounce/414 mL) cans full fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
1 heaping cup (265 to 280 mL) blueberries
1 mango, pitted and diced
5 to 7 fresh mint leaves
1 1/2 tablespoons arrowroot starch
1/3 cup (75 mL) maple sugar
In advance, make sure the freezer bowl of your ice cream maker has been in the freezer overnight, or for at least 15 hours.
Remove the coconut milk from the fridge and carefully scoop the thick solid cream off the top. In a blender, combine the blueberries, mango, mint leaves, coconut solids, arrowroot starch, maple sugar, and a pinch of salt and puree until smooth. Pour the mixture into the freezer bowl of your ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturers directions.
Transfer to a freezer safe container and chill for about 2 hours, or until the ice cream firms up. Serve! If freezing overnight, let the ice cream soften at room temperature for about 20 minutes before serving.
Enter to win a copy of The Love & Lemons Cookbook by leaving a comment below with you’re favorite frozen summer treat! Contest open to U.S. residents only and will run through next Wednesday, May 4th.