Our family cabin on Owasco lake was my childhood summer haven. From Memorial Day through Labor Day, you could find us there: swimming, fishing, grilling corn on the cob, celebrating birthdays, fathers day, running out to the end of the dock to wave down the ice cream boat (yes, that’s a real thing!), kayaking, camping on the beach, watching the fourth of July fireworks from out on the boat, roasting marshmallows, tubing behind the boat, and playing cards up in the shade of the cabin’s deck. Some of my fondest memories growing up took place at that cabin.
But I was a kid. I didn’t have to worry about the upkeep, the costs, the hauling of food or water to and from, or heck, cleaning out the out house. Sure, I noticed the noise of my Grandpa constantly blowing leaves away from the cabin, but to me, it was the background noise of the cabin. I feel like to him, the cabin was a continuous project. But me, a child and then lazy teenager, I didn’t see the cabin for the work it was, I just enjoyed being tan and splashing in the water to cool off.
To be fair, I do have great memories of Grandpa towing us in the tube behind the boat and playing card games after the work was done, but I find it interesting how a place can hold so many different feelings for different people and how our perspective of a place evolves along with us.
We don’t have the cabin anymore, and while I’m a little sad about that, I understand why we don’t. The upkeep, the costs and the labor of love that it was doesn’t serve our family anymore. It was worth the work when everyone lived close by and it was common to have 20 people there on the weekend – but now, we’re grown, we’ve moved away.
Sometimes it takes moving away from something to really see it for what it was and what it meant to you.
So here’s my tribute to those summers at the cabin, waving down the ice cream boat and letting the ice cream melt down the front of our swimsuits while sitting on the dock.
The cookies are not vegan. The ice cream is not free of refined sugar. But heck, its summertime, and they’re full beloved flavors and memories. Also its worth noting that this ice cream is somewhere between a sorbet texture and ice cream flavor. I don’t have an ice cream maker, so I make do with my high speed blender and hand mixer when it comes to homemade ice cream. The result is not perfect, but its easy and delicious. Oh and I don’t have another kitchen gadget getting dusty in my cabinets for 95% of the year.
Raspberry Coconut Ice Cream
1 can full fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
1/4 cup plain unsweetened almond milk
2 cups frozen raspberries
1/4 cup +2 tablespoons organic cane sugar
6 medjool dates, pitted and soaked if not moist
1/2 cup fresh raspberries, chopped
Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cups organic cane sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup dark cocoa powder
1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks
For the ice cream…
In a high speed blender, puree your dates. Pour in the almond milk, then start adding the frozen raspberries, blending intermittently until you have a thick puree with an even consistency. In a medium sized mixing bowl, scoop your coconut milk (use the whole can, including liquids). Pour puree mixture into the mixing bowl, and using a hand blender on a medium-high speed, whip for 60 seconds. Pour in sugar and whip for another 3-5 minutes, making sure to scrape down the sides. Fold in chopped fresh raspberries*. Pour into parchment lined pan, cover with plastic and freeze over night.
*If you would like to TRIPLE your chocolate, mix in 1/2 cup of chocolate chunks along with the fresh raspberries.
For the cookies…
Preheat oven to 350°. Cream the sugar, butter and vanilla extract. Add the egg and continue to cream for 30 seconds. Stir in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Once combined, fold in chocolate chunks. Roll into 1 inch balls and bake on a silicone baking mat for 8 minutes. Let cool before constructing sandwiches.
For the sandwiches…
You guys are smart and I trust you know how to construct an ice cream sandwich (even just by looking at it)…but just in case, it goes like this: Cookie, Scoop of Ice Cream, Cookie. You got this.
Yields 8 cookie sandwiches plus some extra ice cream.
OR if you’re not into the mess of ice cream sandwiches, I give you the Sundae option. Equally delicious. Not quite as fun. Maybe a bit more posh. Less likely to drip all over your front. If you’re going this route, I recommend adding a little champagne or your choice of booze to the ice cream mix because its summer and WHY THE HECK NOT??