Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Prickly Pear Ice Cream

Below you will find two recipes for prickly pear ice cream: the recipe I actually made, and the recipe I would eventually like to make. See, I used to live in Arizona, where I took prickly pear fruit for granted. You could just walk out to your yard (or your neighbor’s) and pick the prickly pears. Now I’m in Seattle and have a great plum tree, but no cacti. My mother-in-law graciously gave me a bottle of prickly pear syrup, which I used in the first recipe below. The syrup would make a great addition to lemonade or margaritas, but sadly tasted more like sugar than prickly pear. (This didn’t keep us from enjoying the ice cream, mind you!) I think if I could find prickly pear concentrate, this method would produce better results.

The second recipe is what I will try to make when I get my greedy little paws on some prickly pears. It will also be a great chance to use agave nectar in ice cream, since you’ll have this whole desert thing going on.

Recipe #1:

2 c. soy creamer, or any non-dairy milk
1 ½ c. soy milk, or any non-dairy milk
¾ c. prickly pear syrup
2 T. lime juice
2 T. arrowroot powder
2 – 4 T. tequila (optional)

Mix ¼ cup of soy milk with the 2 tablespoons of arrowroot and set aside.

Mix the soy creamer, soy milk, prickly pear syrup, and lime juice together in a saucepan. When the mixture has just started to boil, take off the heat and stir in the arrowroot slurry. This should immediately cause the liquid to thicken (not a lot, but a noticeable amount; it will be thicker when it cools).

Set the ice cream mixture aside to cool. After the mixture is cool, stir in the tequila, if using. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.

Recipe #2:

5 - 6 ripe prickly pear fruits
2 c. soy creamer, or any non-dairy milk
1 ½ c. soy milk, or any non-dairy milk
½ c. sugar (or ¼ c. agave nectar)
2 T. lime juice
2 T. arrowroot powder
2 – 4 T. tequila (optional)

Carefully (they have spines!!!) peel the prickly pears and puree in a food processor.

Mix ¼ cup of soy milk with the 2 tablespoons of arrowroot and set aside.

Mix the pureed prickly pears, soy creamer, soy milk, lime juice, and sugar (or agave nectar) together in a sauce pan. When the mixture has just started to boil, take off the heat and stir in the arrowroot slurry. This should immediately cause the liquid to thicken (not a lot, but a noticeable amount; it will be thicker when it cools).

Set the ice cream mixture aside to cool. After the mixture is cool, stir in the tequila, if using. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.

13 comments:

  1. i stumbled upon your blog today and i'm so impressed with the creativity and variety!

    i'm wondering if you've experimented at all with hemp milk. i've found it to be the tastiest milk alternative and it has a richness and creamyness that is better than soy or rice milks.

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  2. I haven't tried hemp milk yet, mostly because my husband doesn't care for it. Still, I'm going to have to use it someday.

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  3. SuperWife12:26 AM

    i miss prickly pears, too! i used to live in AZ as well, and now i'm up freezing my butt of in alaska! i miss the desert :(

    love your blog!

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  4. Wow, I am impressed. Everything I have been searching for since I got my ice cream machine! I am also vegan, but the problem I have been having when making my ice cream is that it never freezes right. It's always fine when I get it out of the ice cream machine, but if I put it into the freezer it turns into a rock! Do you also have this problem, or am I missing something here? I too, was curious about the hemp milk. It is one of the most complete protein sources for vegans, so I'm pysched when I can use it to make ice cream. Anyway, great blog, keep up the good work!

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  5. To Eating Consciously--

    I talk about the whole texture issue on my FAQ page.

    I hope it helps!

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  6. I had no idea prickly pear were edible! They're a major pest since they were introduced to Australia... they grow insanely out of control... Clearly vegan icecream is the solution!

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  7. Sarah C.6:52 AM

    Wow - what an idea! I just moved to texas, where prickly pears are literally everywhere. I kept wondering what I could do with them, and now I've got the idea of the century: so thanks!

    Here's the question, though: how do I know when they are ripe? Are the ripe ones the bright red ones pictured above, or are they ripe when lighter pink, or green (I swear, that's what was being sold at the Dallas Farmer's market). Sorry for the dumb question, but I'm new to the southwest!

    Thanks,
    Sarah

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  8. Sarah C--

    They are at their best when they are bright magenta. I found some here in Seattle at Whole Foods, but they were green-just-turning-light-pink. Alas!

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  9. Sarah C.10:52 AM

    Thanks - that would mean about now? Last weekend hiking they were out-of-this world magenta. So I guess I should go get some, eh?

    Thanks!

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  10. I just came across this blog, and holy awesomeness! This prickly pear recipe in particular struck my fancy. I am so glad I came across you!

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  11. I landed here while searching for prickly pear recipes. I processed two 3.5 gallon buckets of fruits yesterday. I have plenty of jelly and syrup (with lemon juice) now, but still lots of juice left! Your recipe looks tasty.

    I just made a prickly pear vegan ice cream/sorbet this week. (Photo here.) I just used the syrup plus soymilk and a little sugar, but I think the lime juice would add a nice dimension to it. Thanks for the idea!

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  12. monin brand syrups makes an awesome prickly pear syrup called "desert pear". you should try that out, unless that's what you're already using! :)

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  13. MMM, I have to try this. I actually have one prickly pear cactus in my front yard (I live in MA and it survives the horrible winters here)

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