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I’m currently on the Autoimmune Protocol, a nutrient-rich elimination diet that removes foods that irritate the gut, cause gut imbalance and activate the immune system. You can read more about the protocol and why I’m doing this here

Without ice cream, there would be darkness and chaos. (Don Kardong)

Today is LM’s birthday.

Happy Birthday, LM!

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you just how difficult it is to find just the right birthday present for that special man in your life. Well, any male over the age of 15, really. And LM is considerably older than 15. So, because I was having zero joy finding just the right gift for my beloved, I bought myself an ice cream maker for his birthday. More specifically, I bought myself the ice cream maker attachment to my gorgeous tangerine Kitchen Aid mixer, which I had been eye-ing off for a g e s , and needed a good excuse to acquire…

Tangerine Kitchen Aid and Ice Cream Maker Attachment

Photographic evidence…
(Image by TSL)

Here’s my self-talk logic behind that decision: “I can’t find ANYTHING for LM’s birthday… I can’t even take him out to dinner because of this $?@# restrictive AIP caper that I’m on…  Bugger… I know! I’ll make him an extra special meal… He’d really love a special treat and he hasn’t been able to enjoy ice cream since we discovered his allergy to dairy… What if I made him some dairy-free ice cream..? I guess I’ll need to buy that Kitchen Aid ice cream maker attachment-thingy, then. It’s for LM, after all… “

See, it was LM’s birthday present – sort of!

So, I bought the ice cream maker on Tuesday. And then, just like magic, I seemed to come across all these helpful instructions for how to make dairy free ice cream. First, there was the fabulous Beth from Tasty Yummies with her tutorial on ‘How to Make Dairy-Free Ice Cream‘. She was the first one to suggest the addition of gelatin as a binder. Inspired. But, her bestest-looking vanilla ice cream contains nut milks. A no go for me at this stage.

How to Make Dairy Free Ice Cream

(Image from Beth at Tasty Yummies)

…and then, the über talented Jen’ from Predominantly Paleo posted about her latest collaboration with Vivian from The Real Food Guide. An e-book on ice cream for followers of the Autoimmune Protocol. That is – free of all the potentially inflammatory ingredients that traditionally make up ice cream that we ‘AIP-ers’ have to steer clear of – think eggs and cream! Of course I had to get me a copy of that book!

Ice Cream e-book for AIP

Ice Cream for AIP Peeps!

Armed with my trusty tutorial from Beth AND helpful e-book care of Jen’ and Vivian, of course it would only be sensible to make a practice ice cream before we actually get to the special birthday dinner, yes?

Also, if I’m being honest, I couldn’t decide which ice cream to make. Mint Choc-Chip sounds like heaven to me, but I know it’s not really LM’s bag. Neapolitan Stacks sound a m a z i n g, but perhaps a tad fiddly for a practice round. I was leaning towards a tried-and-true chocolate ice cream…

…and, since I’ve now been on the second round of the AIP for over a month and am free of my symptoms AND I seem to have a reaction to carob (which means no Carob Ice Cream) AND chocolate is one of LM’s favourite flavours (also mine!), I decided to amalgamate the tutorial base recipe for vanilla ice cream and the carob ice cream recipe from the e-book to make my own version of raw chocolate ice cream.

If it worked, LM would be happy AND I could count cacao as my first reintroduction test*…

And, you know what?

It only 1/2 worked…

I subbed in raw cacao for carob and it tasted pretty good in its pre-churned state. Once the ice cream machine had worked its magic, I was excited. The taste was good – perhaps not Italian chocolate gelato amazing – but a solid ‘good’. The texture was impressive, too.

And, I think, if we had eaten it right then and there, I would have been happy. Instead – since it was 3 o’clock in the afternoon – I popped it into the freezer so we could have it as dessert.

After dinner, I removed it from the freezer and it was OBSIDIAN rock hard! No leaving it on the bench for 15 minutes to come to temperature for this baby. It took a solid 45 minutes AND even then we were chipping away at it. So – not entirely successful.

BUT! I am not giving up! Tonight I will follow an actual recipe to the letter and make trusty vanilla ice cream. I think we’ll make dairy-free ice cream sundaes – with whipped coconut cream and raspberry sauce. Watch this space for an update!

…stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles. Instead, climb more mountains, eat more ice cream, go barefoot oftener, swim more rivers, watch more sunsets, laugh more and cry less. Life must be lived as we go along. (Robert J. Hastings, Tinyburg Tales)

*On the upside – no reaction to last night’s chocolate indulgence (yet). YAHOOO!

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