Friday, June 11, 2021


Ice creams and other frozen treats that do not require churning or ice cream machines are always a good choice. Truly, if nothing else, than just for the ease of preparation and availability. And there is nothing like a quickly whipped up treat on a warm, late spring day.
Sweet, ripe bananas, unsweetened cocoa powder, rich dark chocolate, intense and earthy espresso, and a shot of rum for good measure make this ice cream a real delight.
Choose very ripe bananas, as they are the sweetest, and will give the best texture and flavour. A good guideline for choosing bananas for this type of dessert is to simply use the ones that would be good for banana bread. Even bananas that are on their way to become overripe can be used. Portioned up and frozen, they will work like magic.
The rum is optional, but I definitely recommend adding it, as it adds just a mere hint of delightfully burnt sugar and a pleasant aftertaste of sweet vanilla.
If you prefer your ice cream soft, served in a glass, it can be enjoyed right after the final blending, especially with plenty of chocolate shavings, for the tiniest hint of crunch. And if you prefer your ice cream in scoops, an hour or so in the freezer is all it needs. Add just a small cup of freshly made espresso, and enjoy.

350 grams ripe bananas
30 grams unsweetened cocoa powder
100 grams dark chocolate (at least 60% cocoa solids)
30 millilitres plant double cream
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 teaspoon dark rum, optional

Slice the bananas into somewhat thin slices, arrange them on a large tray lined with baking parchment, cover tightly with cling film, and place them in the freezer for at least 4 hours, or until completely frozen. Once the bananas are frozen, melt the chocolate, over low heat or in the microwave, and let it cool down slightly. Head up the plant double cream until barely simmering, add in the espresso powder, vanilla, and rum, mix well, and remove from the heat, so it can cool down as well.
Take the frozen banana slices out of the freezer and add them to the bowl of a large food processor. Pulse them a few times until they start to blend up, and then let it run until the bananas turn into a soft ice cream. Sift in the cocoa powder and let the food processor run for a minute or two, until it blends completely. Add in the melted and cooled chocolate, as well as the cooled double cream, and blend again. If it is too soft for your liking, pour it into a freezer-safe container and freeze it for an hour or two. Otherwise, serve immediately with some additional dark chocolate shavings. Yields 600 ml of ice cream.

Author's note: I did not add sugar to this ice cream, as I find it has plenty of sweetness from the bananas and chocolate. However, if you prefer your ice creams on the sweeter side, do add a spoonful of icing sugar while blending.