Cocoacoconut ice cream sandwiches
This is a visual story of the romance of ice cream and cookies. These ones are dairy-free, gluten-free, refined sugar-free and plant-based (that’s mostly what I want to hear about my desserts). They are a sensual treat to eat – crunchy, messy, gooey – and quite full of deep cacao flavour. The cookies are wonderfully crisp and great to eat on their own. You could dip them into hot cocoa almond milk. You could also dehydrate them rather than bake them and then your dessert would be raw, if that’s your health vibe. The ice-cream is no-churn and sets in a few hours, so you can make this all on one day if you need to.
For the cocoa cookies:
1 cup almonds
1 cup + 1/3 cup shredded coconut
1/4 tsp Himalayan salt
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 tbsp cacao powder
For the ice cream:
1 can organic coconut milk
1 can organic coconut cream
1 cup cashews, soaked for 4 hours
3 tbsp cacao powder
5 juicy medjool dates
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
For the chocolate drizzle:
20g cacao butter
1 tsp natural maple syrup
1 tbsp cacao
White mulberries and cacao powder to garnish.
First make the ice cream. Blend all the ingredients together in a high-speed blender until smooth. Always remember to make absolutely sure you have de-pipped your dates properly. I set mine in a very square baking dish (30cm x 30cm) for around 4 hours.
Next, make your cookies. Set the oven to 180 C. Pulse the almonds and coconut in a food processor until it crumbles, but do not make the mix too fine. Add the rest of the ingredients until it forms a sticky paste. Roll the cookie dough into balls and flatten onto a non-stick baking tray or baking paper. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, or until you can smell they are done. They will harden as they cool on a rack once baked.
When your ice-cream is set enough to cut out, use a cookie cutter or glass to cut into rounds roughly the same size as your cookies. If you set it overnight, then remove the ice-cream about 30 minutes before you assemble. Because it’s not a churned ice-cream and doesn’t contain cooked refined sugar, it won’t be super soft and scoopable. You will have to eat it at the right temperature.
Melt the cacao butter gently and whisk in the other ingredients. I spread a bit of the sauce onto each upturned biscuit before sandwiching the ice cream between. Then I layered them and drizzled with more cacao sauce, white mulberries and cacao to garnish. Remember, cacao gives you energy much like caffeine does. Be responsible for what you do with all that energy… go lightly. Enjoy!