Saturday, July 19, 2014

Stracciatella Ice Cream (raw, vegan)

reading time: ca. 1 min



Quick 2-ingredient ice cream without ice cream maker

Preparation time: 5 mins + 3 hours freezing time
Main ingredients: banana, chocolate/cacao beans
difficulty level: easy, fool-proof
serves: 1
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, nut-free, paleo, raw food, and delicious "even so"


...And my Ice Cream Galore [summer special] ist hereby over! I can't believe how fast i posted these 20 raw vegan ice creams. So now i'ts back to "New Posts on Wednesdays & Sundays". But first i gotta throw some glitter for the grand gelato finale and present to you the coolest raw ice cream ever (#gettit? cool.) Anyway - i saved the best until last...

STRACCIATELLA!

Inspired by Harriet's stracciatella gelato over here (using coconut milk), i decided to make a raw vegan, fat-free and of course dairy-free version, using only bananas and cacao. Sound crazy? Well it's crazy good.




Ingredients

3 large ripe bananas
around 3 tbsp crushed chocolate OR cacao nibs *
2 tbsp agave syrup or coconut blossom sugar (optional)

also:
- a high-speed blender or food processor (NO NEED FOR AN ICE CREAM MAKER!)


Instructions

You know how it works: First, prepare your bananas as you would for a basic banana ice cream (break your bananas into pieces, let sit in freezer for a few hours, put frozen banana pieces into your blending machine and blend until creamy smooth).

Now add the chocolate or the cacao nibs (crush cacao beans by simply blitzing in a coffee grinder, food processor or blender). You could also add your preferred sweetener - i didn't though because my super-ripe bananas were already sweet enough.

Blend again until everything becomes a creamy mass. Using a spatula, spoon or ice cream scoop, fill everything into a nice bowl and scoop away immediately! :)

* NOTE: Cacao nibs are cacao beans that have been peeled and crushed.
Since our local organic shop had run out of cacao nibs that week, i fell back on a bar of organic dark chocolate (ingredients: cacao mass, cacao butter, coconut blossom sugar, all from organic agriculture. Cacao solids: 92%). i simply shredded the chocolate into fine flaky slivers using a mandolin. Gotta be flexible, folks!



The benefits of cacao and dark chocolate
(source: livestrong.com)

Cacao is the healthy big sister of chocolate. Besides being a great substitute for coffee and chocolate candy (cacao nibs are sugar-free and contain 11 grams of fiber per ounce, compared to just 1 gram of fiber and 14g of sugar per ounce in milk chocolate!), cacao is known to be beneficial for our health.

Cacao
- is a strong antioxidant
(due to its content of Polyphenols called flavonoids with antioxidant properties it improves health by altering cell-signaling pathways, according to the Linus Pauling Institute
- decreases “bad” LDL cholesterol and increased "good" HDL cholesterol, also thanks to flavonoids
- is associated with decreased blood pressure
- improves cholesterol levels
- enhances circulation by promoting dilation, strength, and health of blood vessels
- can have anti-depressant and euphoric effects (due to the essential amino acid Tryptophan - the reason why "chocolate makes you happy"!)
- makes a great substitute for coffee! It contains caffeine as well as a substance called theobromine, both of which are stimulants. Therefore, eating too many cacao nibs may cause anxiety, heartburn, sleeplessness and abnormal heart rhythms, according to New York University's Langone Medical Center. So as with everything: enjoy in moderation!

In addition, cacao eaters were less likely to die from cardiovascular disease or prematurely from any other cause. Although these findings don't prove that cacao alone was responsible for the results, they do indicate a possible relationship between cacao and heart disease, as well as one between cacao and longevity.

And in addition to all those great health benefits, those cacao beans make for a super delicious, creamy ice cream! :)




Note: This is part of my oh so glorious raw vegan Ice Cream Galore, hurray!





Maisy



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