There are a thousands reasons why March is the best month of the year.
Or at least seven.
- Pi Day (okay, I don’t care about pi day, but I think it’s totally awesome how much some people do)
- National Women’s History Month
- spring break
- spring training begins
- daylight savings
And at the very top of the list:
- spring begins
- my birthday
which are both happening this weekend!
Starting with tomorrow (officially the first day of spring this year) it’s going to be a weekend of celebration. This really couldn’t have come at a better time. With us racing to get the airbnb ready by April 1st, most of the weekends since the year started have been long and exhausting. Jason and I have seen very little of each other and in terms of going out to celebrate, well that just never seems to happen anymore.
With the beginning of spring and my birthday falling on the very same weekend that we are FINALLY finished with the airbnb (besides some very small odds and ends) we are going to get out and have some fun! And while much of the birthday celebration has remained a mystery to me, I do know that some of it involves ink, a doug fir, and my forearm.
(stay tune via Instagram to find out how that turns out!)
Almost just as exciting as my 33rd birthday is the welcoming of spring. The longer days and warmer weather have been so life-giving and although we have been experiencing this spring-like weather for some time, there is something very satisfying about the official end of winter.
For this celebratory weekend I made this Almond Joy Ice Cream, and people, this is my favorite ice cream I’ve made to date! Made with a creamy coconut base, rippled with chocolate ganache, and with chunks of Go Max Go Mahalo Bars (think Almond Joy) in each bite, I can think of no better way to begin this weekend’s festivities.
- Coconut Ice Cream Base
- 2 cans full-fat coconut milk
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 6 ounces chocolate chips
2 Go Max Go Mahalo Bars
- almonds, chopped
- shredded coconut (optional)
- Place the bowl of your ice cream maker in the freezer the night before.
- To make the ice cream base, whisk together ½ cup of coconut milk and cornstarch. Set aside. Place a medium sauce pan over medium heat and add remaining coconut milk, granulated sugar, and salt, stirring until the sugar has completely dissolved. Add milk/cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Once coconut milk is boiling stir continuously for 2 minutes, until ice cream base is thick and cornstarch is completely cooked. Remove from heat and add the vanilla.
- Transfer ice cream base to a shallow container and chill for at least 2 hours. For best results, this should be made the night before.
- Before churning the ice cream, make the chocolate ganache by heating up ¼ cup coconut milk to a scald (just before boiling point). Pour over chocolate chips, cover for 1 minute, and then stir together until dark and thick. Set aside to cool. Ganache should be cooled but still pourable.
- Churn the ice cream according to manufacturer's instructions. Once it is thick and creamy and resembles soft serve, add the chopped Mahalo bars. Churn for 30 seconds more.
- In a small loaf pan or similar sized container place about ⅓ of the ice cream and smooth down. Add a few spoonfuls of ganache and cover with another ⅓ of the ice cream. Repeat until ice cream is gone finishing with a few spoonfuls of ganache. Run a knife through the ice cream to help ripple the ganache and return to freezer for another 2 hours.
- Serve with extra ganache, almonds, and coconut.
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