OK so you can buy desserts in the supermarkets and from high quality to ‘ehhh’!I don’t see any point in putting any food into my mouth that doesn’t pass the taste test as well as the ‘green’ test. So I generally make my own ice-cream as it is a good way of using up any excess egg yolks left over from making meringues or coconut prawns. Or taking advantage of cheap whole milk that is sometimes offered at Shell service station stores and bulk bottles of cream you can get from catering stores. And it is soooo easy!
Just make a basic egg custard. Measurements are not crucial – just make sure to avoid curdling it: use a double boiler over a low simmer. For flavour add a dash of pure vanilla or vanilla bean scrapings (and then put the rest of the vanilla bean in a small bottle of vodka which can become your ‘vanilla farm’ – don’t buy vanilla again!).
Add some castor sugar to taste and a small pinch of salt. If you use iodised salt you may help your thyroid and avoid a goitre. Let the custard cool when it has thickened and avoid a skin by putting some gladwrap over the top.
Beat some cream and fold carefully through whatever you have lots of – this could be chunks plus puree of strawberries, a handful of shredded fresh or dried coconut and a splash of pina colada mix, mangoes, blueberries, chocolate or anything you fancy, pecan nuts and a splash of maple syrup, chopped marshmallows – the list is endless.
Ideally you should churn the mix in a special icecream churn but that really isn’t required. I just put it in small ziplock bags and throw it in the freezer. If I need a posh dessert, I will freeze if more neatly on a nutloaf tin lined with baking paper and then saw off bits in perfect circles. Or I will partly freeze, scoop out and totally freeze in scoops all ready for serving. Use baking paper, foil or gladwrap to separate your servings.
You will be AMAZED at how much this makes.
Good luck with the discipline of not eating it all in the first week, but I find if I pack it in the freezer in smallish single serves it will last for ages, I tend not to eat it all at once and I can have a range of flavours. Yes, the ziplock bags are not particularly green but I offset it by not buying a processed food that requires so much transport and mostly I use my almost antique Tupperware, Rubbermaid or their equivalent or even icypole makers to freeze the icecream. , also after using the ziplock bags get washed for another round of icecream!
If your custard base is a good one, you will find that churning is not really important so no need to use the non-eco ice cream machines.
Oh, and remember, you can always melt some chocolate and drizzle it over the top with some chopped nuts for garnish to make a Heavenly bar of your own!