W is for…Walnuts!
Amazingly I’ve managed to featured 3 seeds this month- chia, hemp and sunflower, but no nuts, despite the fact that I eat them everyday in some form or another. I’m changing that today and talking about walnuts!
I tend to use them mostly in in cakes and muffins- they’re vital in carrot cake in my opinion and I love both banana bread and oaty-raisin cookies including walnuts in the mix. They’re rich in healthy omega-3 fatty acids and their oily nature means they’re excellent in raw desserts too. My favourite raw brownies have a walnut and date base.
On the savoury front, walnuts are beautiful in crunchy, tangy salads, and the pear, walnut combination is well-known. As well as pairing them with sweet and tangy foods, they go well with similarly earthy flavours like lentils and mushrooms. This Lentil-Walnut Salad is delicious, as is this Walnut-Mushroom-Tempeh Pasta Sauce.
I’m clearly making up for the dearth of sweetness last week since I’ve got another dessert recipe for you! I doubt anyone’s complaining though…This sumptuous bowl is filled with my 10-minute Raw Vegan Chunky Monkey Ice Cream.
I imagine all my readers are familiar with Ben & Jerry’s “Chunky Monkey” flavour ice-cream, but in case you’re not, according to the creators themselves it’s “Banana Ice Cream with Fudge Chunks and Walnuts”
Sounds pretty simple, right? Simple it may be but it’s the perfect flavour to me, and was my favourite B&J flavour growing up. (Followed closely by Strawberry Cheesecake…) Not that I actually got to enjoy it too often as, although we almost always had B&J in the freezer (my Dad, in particular, was an ice cream fanatic) Chunky Monkey was hard to come across sadly and so it was extra special when I did have it.
My version is vegan, of course, much healthier, and comes together in just a few minutes. Definitely quicker to make than going out to buy some
I hope you’ve all come across the frozen banana ice-cream trick, if not, that needs to change NOW! All you need is frozen bananas and a food-processor or blender and you’ve got the most amazing sweet, creamy and healthy ice cream. I added a generous handful of buttery, toasted walnuts (store-bought ice cream is always skimpy on the add-ins) and homemade raw fudge chunks. It was far better than I remembered B&J being.
- 2 Medium-size bananas, sliced and frozen
- 1/4 C Walnuts
- 1 Tbsp Almond butter
- 1 tsp Coconut oil, melted
- 1 tsp Raw cacao powder OR Cocoa powder
- 1 tsp Maple syrup
- 1/8 tsp Vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- Make the fudge first of all as it will need a few minutes to set up.
- Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl, pour into a tiny container or spread thickly onto a piece of parchment paper. Place in freezer for 10 minutes, or longer, to set. Remove from freezer and cut into small chunks. Store in the freezer whilst prepping other ingredients as it will melt if at room temperature for long.
- If desired, toast walnuts in a pan over medium-heat for approx 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until they begin to darken slightly and smell nutty.
- In a food processor blend the sliced banana until smooth, don’t over-process though or it will melt. Fold through walnuts and fudge chunks, reserving a few for topping. Scoop into bowl (s) and serve.
* Note: For officially raw ice cream, use raw almond butter, raw cacao, agave or coconut nectar in place of the maple syrup, and leave walnuts raw.
What was/is your favourite Ben & Jerry’s flavour?