I’m a sucker for crunchy bits in my ice-cream, I love the textural difference of the creaminess and then, once in a while, a nice crunchy sweet thing pops between your teeth, although I find you never get enough of these awesome bits in store bought ice-creams.
I’d had this paper bag of buckwheat kicking around the car since I was back on the east coast of Queensland, where I had come across a cute little health food store in the middle of a fishing town. I figured it was time I did something with it. Also, a freezer full of bananas, and five or so trees here with huge bunches growing very quickly, called for some banana ice-cream!
Out of all the vegan ice-cream recipes I have tried, this one is by far the richest, sweetest and most creamy, while being the most natural at the same time! When it comes to vegan sweets, sometimes I find that many of the recipes call for so many ingredients, sometimes ones that aren’t always easily accessible. That’s why I love how simple this ice-cream is. If you wanted, you could make it with nothing but the frozen banana and it would still be delicious!
The buckwheat crunch is so good, you can use it in many other ways, like on top of fruit salad, yoghurt, other desserts, or part of a granola or trail mix. Or just eat it on it’s own. You can buy ready made ‘buckinis’ from health food stores if you don’t want to bother with this part of the process. Although it’s easy, it does take a couple of days. If you don’t have a dehydrated, you can dehydrate it in the oven by putting it on it’s lowest setting and leaving the door ajar, it should take about 8 hours. Or, if you’re impatient, like me, and your not too worried about it being technically raw, then you can just bake it in the oven at 160 degrees celcius for about 20-30mins, or until crunchy.
1 cup raw buckwheat
1/2 cup maple syrup (or liquid sweetener of your choice, you can use honey if you you don’t need it to be vegan)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
To activate the buckwheat, place it in a large jar or bowl, cover with water, make sure there is enough water for the buckwheat to absorb. Cover, and soak in the fridge overnight.
The next day, drain and rinse the buckwheat with a sieve, rinsing until the water runs clear. Return it to the jar or bowl and cover with water again. Soak in the fridge for another 8 hours or overnight again.
Drain and rinse the buckwheat, again unit water runs clear. Drain well. Place in a bowl with the maple syrup and spices and mix well.
Spread out onto dehydrator trays (or baking trays, see alternative methods above). Dehydrate at 40 degrees, overnight.
Store in an airtight container.
Caramel Banana and Buckwheat Crunch Ice-Cream
4-6 bananas, peeled and frozen (I used 6 as they were very small organic ones, but if you get the big ones from the supermarket just use 4 or 5)
1/2 cup pitted dates, firmly packed
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup buckwheat crunch
Extra buckwheat crunch and toasted coconut chips to serve
Chop the frozen banana and place in a food processor along with the dates and vanilla. Process until smooth.
Transfer to a bowl and stir through the buckwheat crunch.
Freeze for 6-8 hours, or overnight.
To serve, top with extra buckwheat crunch and toasted coconut chips, or other toppings of your choice.