Sunday, June 21, 2015

Vegan Ice Cream Social

Summer is here, and what better way to kick it off than with a good old fashioned ice cream social!  Eleven of us gathered together at Well on Wheels headquarters to learn how to make icecream and feast on a menu featuring strawberry shortcake, four flavors of vegan icecream, double chocolate brownies and coconut whipped cream. I feel like I ate a house. 

 I'm really happy to be able to share delicious food with everyone, and I loved the positive response.
"So delicious, Mary!!!"
"That was quite a treat today!"
"Karen and I had such a wonderful time, and felt so at home with everyone. Thank you so much for hosting such an amazing afternoon,'re fantastic!!! ...and for the chance to meet such awesome people."
Preparations began nearly a week ahead as I transformed the kitchen into an ice cream production facility.  Recipes were tested and tweaked and flavor combinations invented to create a Five Course Dessert Tasting Menu of pure decadence.  

We started off with a seasonal favorite, Strawberry Shortcake.  This version was made with a spongey, gluten free cake layered in a parfait cup with gorgeous, sweet local strawberries and topped with a luscious coconut whipped cream and mint sprig from my garden.

Then we got into the ice cream.  The next course was a Hot Fudge Sundae made with Maple Bourbon Butter Pecan and Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk ice cream.  The scoops sat atop a dense double chocolate gluten free brownie and were topped with a stream of chocolate sauce.    

I think the unanimous favorite was the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk which had a rich and creamy base of full fat coconut milk and was sweetened with coconut sugar which added a hint of caramel flavor, loads of natural peanut butter, and chunks and swirls of chocolate embedded throughout.   

The next course was a Blueberry Streusel ice cream topped with a fresh blueberry sauce, date nut granola, and a dollop of coconut whipped cream.  It was light by comparison, but still super dreamy delicious.  This one would've made Violet Beauregard deliriously happy.

We finished with a demonstration of how to make ice cream.  For this I chose a simple tropical flavor combination of mango and coconut.  I explained the process of incorporating the sugar into the coconut milk, chilling, preparing the ice cream maker, cutting a mango, and starting the churning process.  

After twenty minutes, we had a silky soft serve treat to savor.  Once we cleaned out the container, the real socializing began as we dug our spoons into the remaining ice cream I had prepared.  Seconds?  Thirds?  Who's counting!  

Thank you everyone for making this such a fabulous event. I look forward to hosting more events like this over the summer.  Stay tuned!

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