Parlor tricks: Summer ice cream without the dairy

With artisanal ice cream trucks parked in every neighborhood, summer in the city can be torture for a vegan or the New Yorker who’s given up dairy for a milker complexion or a digestive system that doesn’t need constant coddling.

Soy Dream just isn’t dreamy, and making it at home isn’t either. So we flipped when we stumbled across Hannah Kaminsky’s A La Mode ($5), an e-cookbook on vegan ice cream, that made it easy.

The 21-year-old aspiring recipe writer and food photographer has licked the greatest challenge of making soy ice cream at home. “I’ve learned how to avoid the iciness that comes from not using eggs and other tricks to making good vegan ice cream,” says the Fairfield, Connecticut resident, who like Van Leewen, is inspired by seasonal ingredients, herbs, and unexpected flavor combinations.

If Kaminsky’s initial efforts are any indication, this pint-size Ben and Jerry is about to hit the dairy-free big-time.

Hannah and her kitchen

White Peach-Rosemary Ice Cream

10 Dried White Peach Halves (About 8 Ounces)*
2 Cups Plain Soymilk
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Dried or 1 Teaspoon Fresh Rosemary
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

*Admittedly, dried peaches are somewhat of a rarity in most grocery stores, let alone something as specific as white peaches.  Should you be unable to find them, dried apricots make a positively delicious replacement.

Roughly chop your dried peaches into pieces the size of raisins, and place them in a medium saucepan along with the soymilk, sugar, rosemary, and salt. Over medium heat, scald the mixture by bringing just to the cusp of boil, and immediately remove from the stove. Cover, and let the dried fruit rehydrate for at least 30 minutes before proceeding.

Transfer the whole mixture into your food processor or blender, and give it a whirl.  Allow it to spin for a good amount of time, between 3 – 5 minutes, until completely pureed. Once smooth, add in the vanilla, and pulse to incorporate.

Chill for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator before churning in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Transfer the soft ice cream into an air-tight container, and let rest in the freezer for at least 3 hours before serving, until solid enough to scoop.

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