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How to make your own Instagram-worthy ice cream

Fancy ice cream sandwiches or crazy cones are all the rage, but the wait to get one of these trendy desserts can sometimes take all the fun out of eating them. Instead, try to make your own at home. Dust with fun ingredients and make these desserts as Instagram-worthy as those $20 cones from downtown Toronto!

The first step is, obviously, to create the ice cream. If you have an ice cream maker…well, you shouldn’t need to go out for ice cream to begin with. If you don’t, it’s quite easy to make using some items you find around the house.

First, stir together two cups of heavy cream and one can of condensed milk. Whip it until the cream creates peaks. Add in a flavour (cocoa powder, vanilla, strawberries, ect.) and fold in to the cream mixture. Put it in a freezer-safe container and freeze overnight. Use an ice cream scoop to get circular scoops.

If you want to go the old fashioned route, you can also make ice cream with Ziploc freezer bags. Fill one with half and half cream as well as a few tablespoons of sugar. Mix in your flavours and put these items in a medium size bag. Place the bag in the larger bag and fill the large bag with ice and table salt. Shake until it creates a ice cream consistency.

This process can take a while and is better performed with groups so that everyone has a turn shaking!

If you want to make a vegan alternative, try using coconut milk or almond milk as the base and add your sweetener. You can also create an ice cream by using puree banana and swirling in peanut butter and chocolate chips! No milk-base required.

Top your ice cream with chocolate sauce and fruit. If you want, you can melt chocolate chips in the microwave (or in a glass bowl on top of a pot on the stove) and dip your ice cream in it. Make sure your ice cream is really frozen so nothing slides off. Then, top with sprinkles, marshmallows, or cookies. Get creative and use whatever you have in the cupboard!

If you want to use a cone, make sure to do any “fancy-ing” to it before putting the ice cream on top. Fill the inside with melted chocolate and dip the ring in white chocolate. Stick some sprinkles, cotton candy, chopped nuts, or any other toping on the chocolate. Let dry – this only should take a few minutes.

The best part — once you have the ingredients, you can indulge in much more than a single ice cream cone!

Five unique desserts to satisfy your sweet tooth in Toronto

There are so many options when it comes to satisfying your sweet tooth in Toronto. Thanks to a solid mix of culturally diverse and ethnically-diverse foods, Toronto is home to a global array of sweets. Women’s Post recommends these five unique desserts to try in the city.

Bubble Tea – Taiwan

I’m still amazed when I meet someone who has never tried Bubble Tea before. This magical treat comes in many versions and variations — from creamy iced milk-tea to fruity light teas, all with added tapioca (the bubbles) or substituted for chewy coconut or lychee jelly bits. At some places, there is the option of adding pudding or grass jelly. Bubble Tea originated in Taiwan and there are Taiwanese shops or specialty bubble tea stores almost on every street corner in Toronto. Try places like ChaTime or CoCo Fresh Tea and Juice.

Going for Chatime classics or the new twilight drink in the middle? #chatime #delicious

A post shared by Chatime USA (@chatime.usa) on

Halo Halo – Philippines 

After always hearing about this popular Filipino dessert, I finally got my hands on one this summer. Its principle is rather similar to a snow-cone, but this isn’t just any ordinary shaved ice treat. Traditional halo-halo comes with shaved ice, evaporated milk, various fruits, boiled sweet beans, shaved coconut pieces, custard, and a topping of ice cream. You can also get unique flavours like ube or mango. When I had my halo treat, I was lucky enough to get it from a Filipino food-truck called the Crane Express. But check out other Filipino restaurants in the city that may offer this treat as a dessert.

Austrian Cheese Bun- Austria

Austrian Cheese Buns are a speciality treat made of homemade bread often filled with a sweetened cream cheese. The Guschlbauer is a traditional Austrian brand that dates back to 1919 and they opened their first North American location in downtown Toronto this summer. The buns are made fresh daily and the cream cheese is imported from Australia and New Zealand. The buns take almost three hours to prepare as they are carefully crafted with five layers of melted cream cheese. It’s almost like a cheesecake infused in a soft pillowy bun. Try flavours like original, mango , strawberry, chocolate and even sweet potato.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BXENSjngZ0F/?taken-by=guschlbauerto

Nitrogen Ice-cream- United States

Regular ice-cream is just so passe, (just kidding)  but if you are looking to try a unique take on ice cream , try some nitrogen ice cream. While Dippin’ Dots was once poised to be the future of ice-cream, many creative innovations have come along. This innovative way of preparing the dessert involves infusing the creamy ice cream base with liquid nitrogen to whip up your frozen treat in seconds. Try places like Lab Sense or Cool N2 Canada. You can get traditional flavours like mango, strawberry triple Oreo or try something wild like Super-Frozen Cheetos!

This is the taste of summer sunshine ☀️ #cooln2downtown #nitrogenicecream

A post shared by CoolN2(Nitrogen Ice Cream) (@cooln2canada) on

Uji Matcha Tiramisu- Japan

This tiramisu is a twist on the classic Italian dessert, but it’s sure to not disappoint. Essentially you’re trading your espresso for some matcha green tea. This matcha cake will combine layers and flavours you did not think possible. The Cheese Garden in North York offers traditional Japanese treats, and recently they launched the Uji Matcha Tiramisu to celebrate their one year anniversary. The tiramisu comes with a top dusting of matcha straight from Uji, then a layer of melted cream cheese followed by layers of matcha flavoured lady fingers. This creamy and cheesy treat will only be around for a limited time.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BaaNk8nF02k/?taken-by=cheesegarden_ca

Did we miss your favourite? Let us know in the comments below!

Delicious and refreshing raw vegan chocolate ice cream

On a blazing hot sunny day, a bowl of ice cream is the most refreshing treat imaginable.

Now, there is a way to enjoy this dessert without the guilt of eating something unhealthy. LoveWildLiveFree, a vegan recipe and lifestyle blog by Avra Epstein, brings you a vegan ice cream dish that is healthy and satisfying.

The Raw Banana Chocolate Chunk Nice-Cream uses bananas and chocolate as natural sweetners and it tastes like a delicious bowl of ice cream without any unnecessary additives! Bananas can be used in many dessert recipes as a sugar replacement and instead gives vital nutrients such as potassium and dietary fiber. Cacao, which provides the yummy chocolate addition has magnesium and high antioxidants.

You will need:

4 ripe bananas

Raw chocolate sauce (recipe below)

Raw Heirloom Organic Vanilla Bean and Salt Chocolate Bar

Raw cashew pieces, optional

Raw Chocolate Sauce: 

1 tbsp organic unrefined, virgin coconut oil, melted

1 tbsp raw cacao powder

1-2 tbsp lukewarm filtered water, or more if needed

3 dates, soaked for 10 minutes in lukewarm filtered water

 

Giddy Yo-Yo Chocolate. Photo provided by Avra Epstein
Photo provided by Avra Epstein

Instructions:

  1. Peel bananas and cut into coins. Place the bananas in to an airtight container and freeze for a couple of hours until frozen, or ideally, overnight.
  2. Place the frozen bananas into a food processor. Pulse until you create a crumble, stoping to scrape down the walls of the food processor as you go.
  3. Once you reach an even crumble, blend consistently and stop every so often to scrape down the sides to ensure that you have an even consistency. This will take a little patience, but eventually the mixture will reach a soft-serve ice cream consistency.
  4. Roughly chop a couple of squares of the chocolate bar and add to the food processor, pulsing a few times to evenly distribute.
  5. Depending on your preference, you can eat the ice-cream immediately as soft-serve, or, transfer to an airtight container and freeze until solid.
  6. Top with raw cashews and raw chocolate sauce (recipe below).

 Note: I always use a food processor when making nice-cream, but it can also be made in a high speed blender, just be sure that your blender is powerful enough to handle processing frozen bananas.

Vegan ice cream mix. Photo provided by Avra Epstein.
Vegan ice cream mix. Photo provided by Avra Epstein.

Raw Chocolate Sauce

  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender. It’s that simple, just make sure to remove the dates from the water they’ve soaked in before adding them to the blender!

Tip: If the sauce is too runny place in refrigerator to thicken; if the sauce is too thick add more lukewarm water and blend.

Original recipe can be found here: Raw Banana Chocolate Chunk Nice-Cream