As you can tell from the last few posts, I’ve been on a bit of a baking kick lately – though to be fair, I made this vegan and gluten free Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake (with a surprise ingredient) and banana ice cream a month or two ago and never got around to writing about them until now. One of the food blogs I peruse on my Google Reader is Chocolate Covered Katie (CCK). She mainly writes about vegan dessert recipes and can be credited with this cake recipe, which I think is a winner (as were her better-for-you vanilla cupcakes, which I wrote about here with some modifications). Maybe the craziest (and by that I mean unexpected – in a good way) thing about this cake is that much of the base is made up of chickpeas (!). But if you tried it and hadn’t been told beforehand what was in it, I am telling you you’d have no idea. What a great sneakily healthy way to bake!
You can CCK’s recipe for the chocolate chip cookie cake here (she calls it “deep dish cookie pie”); my modifications were as follows:
- I replaced the oats with 1 cup of quinoa flakes (so it is vegan and a gluten free recipe!).
- I added in a dash or two of cinnamon.
- To make it high altitude-friendly, I reduced the baking soda to 2/3 tsp and the baking powder to 1 1/2 tsp, raised the oven temp to 365 and baked for 32 minutes.
- The finished cake tasted great as it was, but to give it a little something extra, Peter suggested chocolate on top, so I whipped up some dark chocolate ganache frosting – and it was exactly what was needed!
As for the one ingredient banana “ice cream”, it’s something I’ve read and heard about for a while, but only just recently tried making it myself. And it is quite tasty with the above-described chocolate chip cookie cake for an extra decadent treat.
The banana “ice cream” couldn’t be easier or more delicious – you may have to keep reminding yourself you’re just eating banana (so it is inherently vegan) and not some calorie/sugar-laden frozen treat! Hm, idea… I bet it would be quite good with some granola, or over a pancake/waffle for breakfast (after all, if IS just fruit!). But before I digress too much – here’s what you do:
One Ingredient Banana Ice Cream*
*Note: This is called “one ingredient banana ice cream” because all you really need is frozen banana that you’ll blend into cold, creamy oblivion. But – depending on the blender or food processor you’re using – you may need to add up to a couple of tablespoons of liquid (I recommend water or coconut milk) to the bananas to get them to actually blend, if you find the blades of your appliance of choice are whirring without actually pulverizing the banana. Any other ingredients – mix-ins like other fruit, chocolate, peanut butter, cocoa powder, etc. – are completely optional and up to you to decide! Below is what I did on my first go-round.
What You Need:
- ripe bananas, sliced into 1-inch chunks and frozen
- a blender (I think a food processor would also work)
- optional: an ounce or two of dark chocolate (amount needed would depend on how much banana you are using and whether or not you want a lot or just a touch of chocolate mixed in)
- optional: 1-3 tbsp water or coconut milk
What You Do:
- Place the frozen banana chunks in your blender, and blend on a high speed until the texture is smooth and creamy. It will have a similar consistency to soft-serve.
- If the blades of your blender aren’t quite getting to the banana, add in liquid 1 tbsp at a time and use a spatula to move the banana around so the blades can get to it.
- If you want to mix in something else, add it and pulse the blender a couple of times. I had a few tablespoons of dark chocolate shavings left over from a baking experiment, so I tossed those in and pulsed to combine.
- Spoon the banana into bowls and enjoy!
- If you have leftovers, store in an air-tight glass or plastic container in the freezer. I found it kept really well for at least a week – it just had a firmer texture (like scoope-able ice cream).