Not only that but a pint of cashew Ice cream from the store, typically costs about 5 dollars. You can make a pint of this maple-vanilla cashew ice-cream for just a dollar or two! Although this doesn't take much time to make, you must plan ahead, as it does need some time to freeze. I do not own an ice-cream maker --but I assume you could just pop this recipe into one if you own one...but I make this using my Vitamix. You could probably mix the ingredients up using a less powerful blender and just blending for a longer time, but once you have frozen the mixture into an ice-cube tray, I imagine you would need the power of a Vitamix or other powerful blender to turn it into soft-serve. Perhaps a food processor fitted with an, "S" blade would work for this step though.
2 cups unsweetened almond milk (I make my own -- Here's my recipe)
1/4cup raw cashew pieces
4 deglet dates, pits removed
1/4 cup real maple syrup
1/4 tsp liquid Steviaclear Stevia extract
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 TBS chia seeds (optional)
1/4 tsp guar gum or xanthan gum (optional)
I recommend using Wisdom Brand, SweetLeaf SteviaClear. Some stevia extracts -- some of them taste terrible so choose carefully. Also, be careful when buying this product -- it's easy to mistake this bottle for one of their flavored varieties -- which do not have the same level of sweetness. You want the plain unflavored Stevia.
The chia seeds and guar gum are not absolutely necessary -- however these two ingredients work synergistically in this recipe to add a wonderful creaminess and richness, improving the mouth-feel which is an important part of the ice-cream experience.
1) Blend the almond milk with the cashews and dates in a powerful blender on high until it is completely smooth and creamy and you don't see any pieces of cashews or dates.
2) Add the maple syrup, stevia and vanilla extract and blend again for 30 seconds.
3) Turn the blender on its slowest setting and add the chia seeds and let them mix slowly for about a minute while they swell up. Now add the guar gum and turn the blender to high and blend for another minute until the chia seeds are completely broken up and incorporated.
4) Divide the liquid between two ice-cube trays and place these into a freezer.
5) Once these are frozen solid, remove the frozen cubes of ice cream and pop them into the Vitamix. Turn to high and use the tamper device to push the cubes into the blades until the cubes are completely processed into soft-serve ice-cream, but be careful to NOT over process or it will get too soft. Serve immediately.