My soft spot for ice cream goes back for as long as I can remember. The chimes of the ice cream van driving into our street on hot summer days remains a fond childhood memory. I’d rush to join the queue and then deliberate over which ice cream to spend my pocket money on.
Usually it was a choice between a Screwball or a 99 Flake – both iconic ice creams of the 1980s. The Screwball, an odd looking plastic cone that came with a mini spoon, usually won me over. It wasn’t the added prize of the chewy ball of bubble gum at the bottom that tempted me but rather the raspberry ripple flavour. It’s a flavour that’s especially popular in the UK and ‘consists of raspberry syrup injected into vanilla ice cream’ (thanks Wikipedia).Almost 30 years on from those first moments of ice cream pleasure I still love the stuff. But nowadays I make ice cream a healthy treat by making it at home without added sugar. Which brings me to this fig ripple ice cream.
Childhood nostalgia wasn’t my only inspiration for this recipe – my ripple idea came thanks to Vintage Valley Reduction Sauces. They’re a lovely local company who kindly sent me some of their reduction sauces to try. I’m a big fan of buying local and supporting Australian brands where possible so I was pleased to hear that all of the grapes used for the Vintage Valley products are sourced from the Hunter Valley wine region, just a couple of hours drive from my home in Sydney. Here I’m sharing my first experiment – using their Fig Vino Cotto.
This recipe is as ‘guilt-free’ as ice cream gets. Not only because it’s made with probiotic packed yoghurt (instead of cream) and boasts no added sugar (the bananas bring the sweetness) but also because figs are packed with a whole host of vitamins and minerals.
- 500ml natural yoghurt
- 2 small bananas
- 1 tbsp Vintage Valley Fig Vino Cotto
- 1 tbsp chia seeds and/or cacao nibs (optional)
- Blend the bananas and yoghurt into a smooth consistency.
- Add the mixture to a glass bowl and transfer to the freezer.
- Allow to set for 2-3 hours and then blend again – the consistency should be thick and creamy.
- Stir through the optional chia seeds and/or cacao nibs then drizzle through the fig vino cotto and gently stir.
- Pop the ice cream back into the freezer for as long as it needs to reach your preferred texture.
- For soft serve ice cream the second freeze will take 1-2 hours. For a firmer texture allow up to 4 hours.