I won!

the preparation stages

I am so very very happy! I participated to a contest called The Green Cream which was calling for proposals related to sustainability in ice cream making. There were four different categories and I submitted a recipe.

I decided to take part with a bean based recipe. I selected a local white bean (‘Fagiola di Venanzio‘) which is extremely local and has been declared endangered by the Tuscany region. But for all of you out there, you can use cannellini beans with very similar results.

So, without further ado, the recipe. It is composed of two parts: a bean jam (what the Japanese call anko, which is a bit long to prepare but can be stored for weeks in sterilised jars once made, and I recommend making a discrete amount, given the effort. And the the gelato itself, which uses about 20% of this bean jam in the base. The base is fairly neutral, and can be flavoured as desired. For example with vanilla, or saffron, or mix spices, or lavender. I made all these variations myself.

For the anko you really overcook (I use a pressure cooker) the beans and after cooking you blend them thoroughly with their cooking water. I prefer not to strain the skins but this is always an option if you desire a smoother texture. Then, you add as much sugar as the initial dry beans weight and keep cooking, always stirring (careful not to get burnt as is splatters a lot and it’s HOT!) until the mixture takes a jam consistency. If you ‘cut’ it with a wooden spoons it takes a little for the two parts to join again. Make sure you take the final weight of the jam, as you will use it to calcolate the nutrient percentages. But after repeating the preparation a few times, I calculated that on average the table is ca. 28-30% sugars, 0,8-1% fats, 7,4-7,8% proteins, 11-12% starches e 4,5-5% fibres. Pour hot into sterilised jars, close and sterilise again and you are all set.

For the ice cream, this is a standard recipe. It will turn hard in a normal freezer at -18°C so you can add more sugar as explained in the note at the bottom of the page. Weigh (quantities in grams) and blend really well together all the ingredients:

536      water (ca 54%)

200      anko (ca 20%)

70        honey (select the flavour depending on the character you want to give to the gelato) or agave syrup (ca 7%)

67        deodorised coconut oit (ca 6,5%)

65        sucrose (ca. 7%)

28        olive oil (ca 2,5%) (select extravergin if you want it to impart a strong character)

20        inulin (ca. 2%)

10        acacia fiber (ca. 1%)

3          stabiliser (I use a tara/guar/xanthan mix with a 90/5/5 ratio) (ca 0,3%)

Cool the mix, let it rest in the fridge for a few hours then churn.

For flavour, you can add some vanilla (0,5-1g of vanilla paste/Kg) or saffron (0,2-0,3g/Kg) or whatever you fancy. Enjoy!

Note – my ice creams are designed to be consumed immediately or kept in a somewhat warmer freezer (-10°C). If you wish to store them at the normal -18°C freezer temperature, increase the percentage of sugars (sucrose and dextrose) to a total of approximately 22% keeping the same sucrose/dextrose ratio and decrease the liquid to keep the same mixture total weight.

Liquorice!!!

Isn’t liquorice great? If you love it, that is. Other people positively hate it. For those who love it, vegan or not, this is a lovely gelato, and easy to make.

Ingredients (grams)

water44259%
cashew butter11215%
sucrose8011%
dextrose405%
inulin304%
coconut/olive oil 7/3203%
pure black liquorice193%
stabiliser (e.g. locust bean gum/xanthan 95/5)2.50,3%

Mix the sugars, inulin, powdered liquorice and stabiliser and add them to the water at ca 40°C, mixing well. Bring to ca 85°C always mixing. remove from heat, add the cashew butter and the oils, blend thoroughly . Cool rapidly. Let the mixture rest for a few hours, then churn.

Note – my ice creams are designed to be consumed immediately or kept in a somewhat warmer freezer (-10°C). If you wish to store them at the normal -18°C freezer temperature, increase the percentage of sugars (sucrose and dextrose) to a total of approximately 22% keeping the same sucrose/dextrose ratio and decrease the liquid to keep the same mixture total weight.

Roasted banana ice cream

For this delicious roasted banana ice cream I cooked 600g of overripe fruit with 45g of dark demerara sugar, then completed the recipe with cashew butter, some oils and water to give a very thick mixture which I churned.

The calculations are based on the dry banana matter (bananas contain ca 75% water) and on the assumption that the sugars in bananas are a 1:1:1 mix of sucrose-fructose-dextrose, which is of course an assumption as it will depend a lot on the ripeness stage and on the cooking process.

As usual if you make it for a normal freezer you can add a little more sugar (in this case I am not sure I would remove the corresponding water, due to the thickness of the mixture).

water50063%
cashews608%
cooked banana (dry weight)15019%
sucrose (dark demerara)456%
coconut/olive oil 7/3405%
salt20,2%
fsc/xanthan 9/13,00,4%

Note – my ice creams are designed to be consumed immediately or kept in a somewhat warmer freezer (-10°C). If you wish to store them at the normal -18°C freezer temperature, increase the percentage of sugars (sucrose and dextrose) to a total of approximately 22% keeping the same sucrose/dextrose ratio and decrease the liquid to keep the same mixture total weight.

Choco-Miso ice cream

For this water-based ice cream I used dark chocolate (90% cocoa), cocoa powder (22-23% fats) and a bit of miso to increase intensity and complexity. My husband declared it ‘best chocolate ever’ 🙂

water477g
dark chocolate (90% cocoa mass)100g
sucrose80g
dextrose40g
cocoa powder (23% fat)20g
miso30g
fsc+xanthan 9:13g

Mix together sucrose, dextrose and the thickeners. In a small pan containing the measured water, bring the chocolate, cocoa powder and miso to ca. 50°C and then add the solids, mixing well with an immersion blender. Bring to a about 80°C to homogenise all the thickeners and switch the heating off. Cool the mixture down rapidly by placing it in a ice-water bath, still blending, then let it rest for a few hours, blending from time to time to ensure it stays smooth. Churn, then transfer to the freezer for a couple of hours.

Note – my ice creams are designed to be consumed immediately or kept in a somewhat warmer freezer (-10°C). If you wish to store them at the normal -18°C freezer temperature, increase the percentage of sugars (sucrose and dextrose) to a total of approximately 22% keeping the same sucrose/dextrose ratio and decrease the liquid to keep the same mixture total weight.

For example, in this recipe you would use 98g sucrose, 49g dextrose and measure 451g water, leaving the rest unchanged.

Peanut butter ice cream

For this water-based ice cream I used cashew, peanut butter, sugar and dextrose. It came our really smooth and I think it’s my best peanut butter ice cream so far.

water485g
100% peanut paste80g
toasted cashew paste60g
sucrose80g
dextrose40g
salt3g
fsc+xanthan 9:13g

Mix together sucrose, dextrose, salt and the thickeners. Bring water to ca. 50°C and add the solids, mixing well with an immersion blender. Bring to a boil to homogenise all the thickeners and switch the heating off. Let it cool to ca 70°C then pour onto the nut pastes and blend thoroughly again. Cool the mixture down rapidly by placing it in a ice-water bath, still blending, then let it rest for a few hours. Churn, then transfer to the freezer for a couple of hours.

Note – my ice creams are designed to be consumed immediately or kept in a somewhat warmer freezer (-10°C). If you wish to store them at the normal -18°C freezer temperature, increase the percentage of sugars (sucrose and dextrose) to a total of approximately 22% keeping the same sucrose/dextrose ratio and decrease the liquid to keep the same mixture total weight.

For example in this ice cream, you would use 98g of sucrose, 49g dextrose and 458g water, leaving the rest unchanged.