I couldn’t possibly be more excited about today’s post, as it brings together two things that make me very, very happy. Ice cream, of course. But, most importantly, a gorgeous cookbook created by two of my favourite blogger friends, Tuulia Talvio from the blog Tuulia and Virpi Mikkonen from the blog Vanelja. I’ve been a huge fan of both Tuulia and Virpi ever since I discovered them a couple years ago, before I had even started blogging myself. Although an ocean separates us, it’s easy to feel the passion and love shining through Tuulia and Virpi’s work. They both constantly keep on impressing me with their stunning photographs and gorgeous guilt-free culinary creations.
Needless to say I was ecstatic when I learned that these two incredibly inspiring ladies where lauching a cookbook. A real, printed cookbook filled with what is probably my most favourite edible thing in the world: ice cream. Or should I say, n’ice cream (as in nice, good-for-you ice cream). Almost too good to be true.
Their book is already a best-seller in Tuulia and Virpi’s home country, Finland. It was just released in the US and Canada last week, and I’m super happy to be sharing a recipe from the book with you today. There’s also a sweet giveaway for you at the end of the post, so be sure to scroll down and enter!
The “N’Ice Cream” cookbook
This book is everything an ice cream lover can dream of. I must say that my expectations were quite high as I was waiting for the book to arrive on my doorstep. I had heard so many great things about it, and I was already a huge fan of Tuulia and Virpi‘s work. But as I was finally flipping through the pages, it became clear that this little gem of a cookbook had not only been made with attention, passion and a whole lot of love, it was also offering so much more than just ice cream. What awaits you with N’Ice Cream is not only frozen treat recipes, but endless inspiration and practical tips to unveil the ice cream goddess in you. The book is filled with Tuulia and Virpi’s stunning signature styling and photography. Their images are light, airy, and look like they’ve been taken straight out of heaven. Mouthwatering photos that will have you dream of summer all year long.
The book offers 80 (!!!) healthy homemade frozen treat recipes, including pretty much everything you can think of: from creamy to instant ice creams, ice pops, sorbets, milkshakes, ice cream cakes, cookies, and even some lovely additions, sauces and toppings to bring all of this goodness to a whole new level. The recipes are all vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, guilt-free, yet totally decadent. Most of them are super quick and easy-to-prepare, which I’m all up for! The book also offers useful tips, information about the ingredients and equipment recommendations to achieve the best ice cream results at home. And the best part is you don’t need to own an ice cream machine to experiment with this book (I don’t), as all of their recipes can be made in a blender! If you like ice cream (especially the kind that’s good for you), this beautiful book belongs in your kitchen.
It was incredibly hard to choose the one recipe from the book I was going to share with you today. I probably changed my mind 4 or 5 times before I finally settled on a classic pistachio ice cream, one of my all-time favourites. There’s something about the color and the soft, mellow taste of pistachios that gets me each time. I decided to top it with a chocolate cake crumble, one of the delicious topping ideas included in the book. I think this is how this book should be used (or at least how I intend on using it) and it’s one of my favorite things about it: choose an ice cream hero that you like, and then play around it to customize it as you wish. Put in on a cone, make a sundae, eat it the old-fashioned way with a bowl and a spoon, add a sauce, a jam, a granola, a cake crumble, or serve it in one of their adorable “oat bowls” or “cookie cups”. There’s even a recipe for homemade gluten-free waffle cones! Do as you please, there’s definitely no wrong way, and the chance of going wrong is pretty inexistant.
This recipe is incredibly easy to prepare (as are pretty much all of the recipes in this book), and is the perfect vegan interpretation of the pistachio ice cream classic. It’s slightly sweetened, rich and creamy. It is so close to the original, I’m convinced no one would guess it’s dairy-free. There’s virtually almost no sugar, as it is mostly naturally sweetened with dates, with just a tiny bit of maple syrup. And I loved that I could make it in my blender. The ice cream is absolutely delicious on its own, but if you’re feeling extra fancy like I was, go for the crumble for a nice crunchy contrast and pistachio-chocolate combo flavour heaven.
Next on my list from the book are the strawberry-rhubarb ice cream, the salty caramel popcorn ice cream (!!!) and the cherry-amaretto creamsicles. Oh and I’m surely keeping the sweet potato gingerbread ice cream to make next fall.
Enter to win your own copy of the N’Ice Cream cookbook by Virpi Mikkonen and Tuulia Talvio by leaving a comment below telling me what is your favourite ice cream flavour! Contest is open worldwide, but please note that winners in the US will receive a paper edition, while other countries will receive a digital copy. Contest closes Thursday June 2nd, 11:59pm EST. Best of luck to everyone!! This giveaway has ended. Congrats to our winner, Harriette L., and thanks to everyone who participated!
Recipe from N’Ice Cream reprinted by arrangement with Avery Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © Virpi Mikkonen and Tuulia Talvio, 2016.
Pistachio Ice Cream + Chocolate Cake Crumble
Pistachio Ice Cream
- 1 1/2 cups shelled pistachios
- 1 1/2 cups full-fat coconut milk
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk or other nut milk
- 6 fresh soft dates pitted
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp maple syrup or more to taste
Chocolate Cake Crumble
- 1/2 cup rolled oats certified gluten-free if necessary
- 1/2 cup raw almonds ideally soaked overnight
- 2 fresh soft dates pitted - or more if needed to achieve desired texture
- 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1 tbsp coconut syrup I used raw honey
For the pistachio ice cream
Put the pistachios in a blender or a food processor (I used a food processor for this step) and grind into a flour. Transfer to a high-speed blender and add all the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth. Taste and add more maple syrup, if needed.
If using an ice cream maker, pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and prepare according to the manufacturer's instructions. Serve immediately or transfer to a freeze-safe container, cover, and freeze until ready to serve. Let the ice cream thaw for 15 minutes before serving.
If you don't have an ice cream maker, pour the ice cream mixture into a freeze-safe bowl and freeze for about 3 hours, mixing well with a spoon every 30 minutes or so. (Freezing time will vary according to your freezer, mine took about 6 hours).
Scoop the ice cream into bowls and top with the chocolate crumble or with chopped pistachios, if desired.
For the chocolate cake crumble
Combine all the ingredients in a blender or a food processor and pulse until fine crumbs form. Taste and add more sweetener if needed. If the mixture is too dry, add a couple pitted dates.
“A balanced diet is ice cream in both hands.”