You know me. I am a cake person. Not an ice cream person—oh no, not in the least. That would be why my only frozen dessert recipe on this blog (meaning, the only instance of me making something remotely related to ice cream) is a chocolate cookie dough ice cream cake, a recipe whose primary purpose is to deliver the consumer a large quantity of cookie dough. And in that purpose it succeeds. Yes, there’s a little bit of chocolate chia ice cream in there, but that’s beside the point.
This ice cream ended up not getting used in my final ice cream cupcake, but I’m okay with that. It was worth making simply to make it. Of course I was skeptical, at first. Could an ice cream made with such strange ingredients as tofu and avocado be good?
The answer is an emphatic yes. First of all, you can’t taste the tofu. It’s just not there. Under the weight of the homemade pistachio butter (which can be made by simply grinding up pistachios in a food processor), the already-weak flavor of the tofu just evaporates. And secondly, the avocado might be a little more detectable, but the wonderfully creamy texture and color it adds to this naturally-green ice cream is worth it.
And besides: vegan ice cream will never taste exactly like non-vegan ice cream. That’s just...common sense, you know? Using an entirely different set of ingredients will have an effect on the flavor, for better or for worse. This ice cream does a terrific job of substituting those tricky-to-replace ingredients like heavy cream and egg yolks in that it achieves a creamy, smooth texture without any animal products. Personally, I’m not too huge a fan of the flavor of coconut milk either (I know, I know—I just don’t like it too much, although I can stand it since coconut products are used in so many vegan baking recipes), so I was glad that it didn’t rely on full-fat coconut milk for creaminess. Feel free to use whatever milk you like here.
|I'm such a pleb, storing my ice cream in Tupperware.|
And plus? It’s pretty damn healthy too. There’s all the healthy fats and proteins from the pistachio butter, plus the protein from the tofu, plus more healthy fats from the avocado—and on top of that, it is sweetened with agave nectar, which some folks claim is healthier than regular sugar (I’m not confirming or denying that claim, just throwing it out there). It’s basically nutrition central. So don’t feel bad about eating a giant bowl of this for breakfast.
Or least that’s what I tell myself. Here’s the recipe.
Vegan pistachio ice cream
Adapted from Vegan Desserts by Hannah Kaminsky
124 grams • pistachio butter • ¾ cup
340 grams • extra firm silken tofu • 12 ounces
110 grams • avocado • 1 small
15 grams • lemon juice • 1 tablespoon
366 grams • nondairy milk • 1 ½ cups
168 grams • agave nectar • ½ cup
4 grams • vanilla extract • 1 teaspoon
2 grams • salt • ¼ teaspoon
62 grams • pistachios, toasted and chopped • ½ cup
In a food processor, combine pistachio butter (feel free to make homemade pistachio butter, as I did!) and tofu until you have a completely smooth mixture. Add avocado, lemon juice, milk, agave, vanilla, and salt. Blend until everything is completely incorporated and smooth.
Add mixture to an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer’s directions. In the last 3 minutes of freezing, toss in chopped pistachios. Transfer ice cream to a container and freeze for another 5 minutes before serving. Keep frozen (obviously).
|I'm not an expert at scooping ice cream. Clearly.|
For more pistachio and nut recipes, see the below links.
Salty sweet pecan pie bars with bourbon caramel sauce. A more portable version of pecan pie.
Banana caramel cake with candied pistachios. The pistachios add a delightful crunch to this cake.
Orange rhubarb bundt cake with pistachio sauce. That pistachio sauce would go amazingly on this ice cream.