Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream had a stroke of Genius when they invented their Cherry Garcia flavor, named after the famed Jerry Garcia (1942-1995) of the Grateful Dead. It’s still their best selling flavor, because it’s freaking delicious. What’s not to love about cherry flavored ice cream with whole cherries and dark chocolate pieces? Too bad they haven’t created a vegan line of their ice cream…
Cherries and Chocolate Stirred In
Who else has been to a Grateful Dead Concert?
I went to one show in Las Vegas in 1995 just before Jerry kicked the bucket. I thought I’d died and gone to hell. 30,000 people with nudity, drugs and chaos everywhere. Though I love the Dead, I’m pretty sure Dave Matthews opening for them was the best part of the show before everyone and their dog was higher than a kite. Funnily enough, we went as a family, as in my some of my siblings and my parents went to the concert too. We went to celebrate and mourn the life of my brother, Ben, who had passed earlier in the year. The Grateful Dead was one of his favorite bands. During the show another sibling who shall not be named here, went missing at some point during the show. We later found him passed out in the parking lot. Someone had stolen the Teva’s off his feet.
Vegan Cherry Garcia Ice Cream
For the Ice Cream Base:
- 1 can full fat coconut milk
- 1 can lite coconut milk
- 3/4 C. raw sugar
- 1 t. vanilla OR cherry extract if you can find it
- 1 C. fresh or frozen pitted cherries
- 1 T. fresh lemon juice
For the Dark Chocolate Pieces:
- 1/2 C. chopped vegan dark chocolate or vegan dark chocolate chips
- 2 T. coconut oil
Method: Make the dark chocolate pieces first: Melt the chopped dark chocolate and the coconut oil together over a double broiler on low-ish heat. Once fully melted, pour the chocolate mixture into an 8×8 pan lined with parchment paper or plastic wrap. Stick in the freezer and let chill til solid.
While the chocolate mixture is chilling, blend coconut milks, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and just a few of the cherries (for color) until completely smooth. Pour into prepared ice cream maker and let churn for 25-30 minutes. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can try this method. While the ice cream is churning, cut the chilled chocolate into pieces with a pizza wheel. Return chocolate pieces to the freezer.
When the ice cream finishes churning, pour ice cream into a large freezer safe container and stir in the chocolate pieces and the remaining cherries, so they stay mostly intact. You can eat it now, like soft serve but it’s much better when you freeze it for 2 hours til it’s nice and solid.
For a raw vegan version of this recipe, please check out my post on Sunwarrior’s site.
Ben, we’re still “truckin” along without you, but man, we miss your guts, you ratbag. What a long strange trip it’s been.
Benjamin McCowan December 9, 1974 – April 1, 1995
This post was shared on Allergy Free Wednesdays