I have a confession:  I’ve never cracked a coconut.  I love coconut water, coconut milk, coconut oil… but I’ve never physically cracked open a coconut.

I’ve also had a dream:  to make the raw ice cream from Pure Food & Wine. If you live in New York City and haven’t had their raw sundae, you’re truly missing out. It’s the most delicious dairy free (and arguably healthy) ice cream you’ll ever have.

What has been standing between me and my dream? 1.  I didn’t have an ice cream maker.  2. I’ve never cracked a coconut.  And the recipe calls for fresh coconut meat.

This weekend, I decided to make my dream happen.  I’ve recently acquired an ice cream maker, so it was time to overcome my fear of coconuts.

I did my due diligence.  I googled extensively to find the best site explaining how to open a young coconut.  I got my knife out, I got my young coconut out — and I started hacking away.  This has been a really rough week and this was just what I needed:  something physical to relieve my pent up stress and–once I got through the tough outer shell–the feeling of accomplishment.

I emptied out the coconut water (which was DELICIOUS–I don’t know if I can go back to Zico) and started to scoop out the tender coconut meat inside. I was expecting there would be a lot of it, but not so much. I ended up with about 3/4 c coconut meat and 2 c coconut water. The recipe I had called for 2 cups, so I decided to half it and hope for the best.

Below is the recipe I made — it’s loosely based on the Pure Food & Wine recipe, but with modification made because of a lack of patience (I didn’t wait for the cashews to soak for 4 hours) and lack of coconut meat.  Because I was winging the recipe, I didn’t expect it to actually work.  I hesitantly poured the mixture into the ice cream maker, convinced it would result in cold coconut-cashew soup, but when I came returned 25 minutes later–I had ice cream.

RAW VANILLA ICE CREAM

1 c raw cashews, soaked 2 hours
3/4 c coconut meat
1/2 water
1/2 c agave nectar  [Next time, I’ll use 1/4 c — this was too sweet for me]
1/4 c coconut butter
1.5 tsp vanilla extract

In food processor, blend all ingredients til smooth.  Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.  (Mine was 25 minutes).

Remove and enjoy!

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