Childhood Favorites - 2


How to rediscover the taste of delicious childhood ice cream (2)

Nina Marin, AMN Ayurveda lecturer-Romania

Ice cream - the much desired product of summer

Ice cream is the product every child knows and wants, especially in summer. But what we find to buy now is nothing like it was 30 years ago. We can't find healthy ice cream anymore. Still, even though we know it's not good, we often want to eat it because it makes us feel good and cools us down in summer.

What is it about this ice cream that's so un-do we want it so badly in the summer? It's light, becomes runny when we eat it and tastes sweet-aromatic, sweet-sour or sweet-bitter, depending on the ice cream assortment we choose. It's refreshing, it gives us a feeling of refreshment, pleasure, flavour and delight.

If we analyze all these characteristics and correlate them with what we know from Ayurvedic tradition, we see that ice cream comes with aspects that tend to rebalance the being, by reducing the general hot quality (ushna-guna) and implicitly by reducing excess pitta-dosha, an excess that often occurs in summer. It is precisely this state of rebalancing that we seek, without being very conscious, when we crave the frozen summer.

Healthy ice creams

There is a very simple way to make healthy ice cream at home that meets all these characteristics.

The basic ingredient is chia. To make the ice cream, the chia seeds will be hydrated. This is usually done by adding lots of water and gradually stirring until a gelatinous paste is obtained. The other ingredients are added to this paste, making the ice cream. It is not necessary to put the ice cream in the fridge, because even at room temperature it cools down.

Hydrated chia seeds don't have much of a specific taste, so the flavor of the preparation will be given by the other ingredients. To give the ice cream a more pronounced taste, instead of water you can use fruit juice or a paste made with a blender from fruit and macerated herbs (rosemary, mint, basil).

The sour taste can be brought out by using lemons or certain sour fruits: blackberries, raspberries, currants, blueberries, blackcurrants, apricots, cherries, gooseberries, strawberries.

The bitter taste is added by using cocoa or carob powder.

For the sweet taste and emollient aspect, we can use bananas. Enhance the sweetness by using honey or another natural sweetener.

We can cut pieces of fruit and mix them into the ice cream and garnish with mint leaves, basil, rosemary or other suitable edible leaves and flowers.

Chia, banana and blueberry ice cream

Blend bananas, cranberries, water and fresh mint leaves in a blender. If we don't have fresh mint leaves, we can soak dried mint powder for 6 hours ina quantity of water, strain, then use the liquid.

To this paste add a few tablespoons of chia seeds and mix until you get a gelatinous paste. Chia seeds tend toand greatly increase the volume when put in aa liquid, so it is necessary to make enough fruit paste.

The result is a sweet ice cream-sour, refreshing. It tastes a lot like the berry ice creams that we-I've shopped in stores before, but it's a really healthy and balancing option.

These ice creams are also great for the fact that they cool us down, even though they are not kept cold in the fridge.

Chia, banana, blueberry and cocoa ice cream

We can transform the previous ice cream by adding cocoa powder. In this case, because we are bringing in a bitter note from the cocoa, it is necessary to add something sweet.

We can sweeten with honey, dandelion syrup, rose syrup or other syrups.

Freeze will be sweet-sour and slightly bitter. These are flavours that are very suitable for the warm season, to alleviate the hot feeling of the season.

Other ice cream recipes

From these two recipes, we can also make other varieties of ice cream, depending on the fruit we have available and the herbs we want to use.

We can use various berries, which are very rich in vitamin C and antioxidants. We can give different flavours by using herbal macerates or by using syrups that wewe made ourselves, from honey and dandelion flowers, fir or pine buds, from rose flowers.

If we make just one of these ice creams, we'll find that we'll want to repeat it as often as possible. It is a very healthy product and suitable for the warm time of the year. And if we don't forget to create a magical atmosphere when we enjoy it, we will finally say with great delight: "This is the ice cream of my childhood!"