Banana & Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

I am not going to lie, I have flirted with the idea of shutting this joint down, calling it quits. I started telling my friends it was all soon-to-be-over. The coming-up-with-a-recipe-and-photographing-it-then-writing-something-meaningful started to feel more stressful than it ever should. This is a hobby, for god’s sake! My husband told me to keep at it, friends told me to stay put. They were as encouraging and supportive as they have always been, reminding me that this place is a good place.

Nonetheless, I kept envisioning a world without Tasty Plan, one in which I would spend my Saturday mornings working on bigger projects and Sundays cooking for people other than my number one, and only, taster. I started to care less about who I should embody through this blog and focus on the food I eat every day. I wanted to make it easier, less fussy, less complex. Suddenly it all started feeling more honest. The language changes, the tone changes, and the recipes were casual. Why make it all shiny and optimistic, when the truth feels more me? Nobody is watching, right?

And so I stuck to it just for a couple more months, until we made it past four years of cooking together—if we can call it.

Then, something amazing happened.

Tasty Plan started trending on Tumblr, and then came all the followers. I’m still in disbelief, excited to know there are others like me—vegetable freaks—and humbled by everyone who’s watching.

This post is to welcome you, the newcomers. I’m so happy you’re here!

This is a celebration-worthy ice cream recipe. After receiving Sarah Britton’s cookbook a couple weeks back, I was inspired to recreate her Rawkin’ Funky Monkey Ice Cream with a couple tweaks. As I read over her recipe, I was immediately taken back to my mother’s roasted bananas, served hot, oozing with caramelized sugar, butter, and cinnamon, topped with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream. If I try hard enough I can feel the cold ice cream dancing in my mouth, delight in every bite. I had to make that into an ice cream. I wanted the deep, dark flavors of caramelized sugar to come through in a different way, a texturally rich, healthy frozen treat.

To achieve this level of deliciousness, first roast super ripe bananas until fork tender, sweet, and caramelized. Then whip into perfection with rich coconut milk, raw dates, cinnamon, and a tiny little bit of maple syrup. Once churned, add dark chocolate chunks to the ice cream for texture, bitterness, and crunch.

Each bite is a perfect combination of sweet, salty, creamy, and crunchy. This Roasted Banana and Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream is addictive, and, as writing for a blog can be, rocky, slightly bitter, but mostly sweet.

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Banana & Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

8 hours, mostly inactive 

  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 1 tbsp. coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 ½ tbsp. cinnamon, divided
  • 4 pitted medjool dates
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 75 grams dark chocolate            

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Peel and slice bananas into 2-inch chunks. Place in a bowl with coconut sugar, ½ tablespoon cinnamon powder, and a tablespoon olive oil. Mix until bananas are well coated. Place in a foil wrapped baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Cool for about fifteen minutes.

Place roasted banana, medjool dates, coconut milk, water, salt, maple syrup, and 1 tablespoon cinnamon in a blender. Pulse until smooth. Transfer ice cream mix into a large bowl. Cover with a plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Fully cooling the ice cream mixture now will make for better ice cream later.

Transfer cooled mixture into an ice cream maker, following the manufacturers instructions churn until ice cream, looks like a thick smoothie. Transfer to a sealed container and freeze. Let ice cream thaw 10-15 minutes before serving.