I don't wish to whine, but it's not been the best of times around here the last couple of weeks. Long story short, and I'm sure I've mentioned this here before, our house got flooded in a big storm a couple of months ago. I arrived home from work to find the dining room and kitchen floors resembling a lake and, as water is wont to work its way downwards, the water had filled up the ceilings and floor of the two bedrooms below. Not a pretty sight. Anyway, after several weeks of not much happening, the insurance company finally realised that the problem was way more serious than they had originally anticipated, launched themselves into "emergency action" as a result, and sent in a team of people to start ripping the house apart. Walls and ceilings have been removed downstairs, and big machines brought in to try and dry the place out. The kitchen and dining room ceiling will have to be removed, likewise the floor, and there is even talk of the possibility of the whole kitchen having to be pulled out. Needless to say, there is plenty of chaos around here and not too much cooking going on, so please bear with me if I'm not posting as regularly here as I'd like to over the next couple of months.
Still, life isn't all grim ... the magnolias and daffodils are out, and the tui which always comes to our garden at the start of spring, and enchants us throughout the summer, has arrived. A wonderful reminder that spring is officially only 14 days away. For those of you who don't know, the tui is a native New Zealand bird, notable for its vibrant green plumage and the two white feathers at its throat. As a child I was always delighted by this Maori legend as to how the kiwi became a flightless bird and the tui got its white feathers.
The other great thing about this time of year is the abundance of citrus fruit in season. I always have huge bowls of lemons, oranges and mandarins on my kitchen bench right now, and it's the time when I launch into production of preserved lemons and lemon curd. Marmalade making is just around the corner.
The fact, therefore, that this week we are Zesting It Up with Nigel Slater at I Heart Cooking Clubs, really brightened my week, and with days warming up a little it definitely seemed like ice cream was the way to go. Though, in truth, I eat ice cream all year round - no excuse of warmer days ahead needed. Trawling around on the internet I came across Nigel's Lime Mascarpone Sorbet. I really liked the sound of that, and in fact I had a couple of limes in the house. I didn't, however, have any mascarpone, wasn't feeling inclined to head to the supermarket to buy some, and easy enough though it is to make time wasn't on my side. Poking around in the pantry, I came across a tin of coconut milk and figured I could do something with that. I also stumbled across a tin of pineapple chunks that had been sitting in the pantry for goodness knows how long, and for the life of me I can't imagine how I ever came to be in possession of a tin of pineapple in the first place. Then I remembered half a tin of condensed milk that had been sitting in the fridge for probably at least as long as the pineapple had been around, and thus this ice cream was born. It's a simple as blitzing up the coconut milk, pineapple chunks, condensed milk, and lime zest in a blender, and then churning in an ice cream maker.
The resulting ice cream is light and refreshing, and a beautiful combination of flavours. This is definitely one I will be repeating a lot this summer. Thanks for the inspiration, Nigel.
Pina Colada Ice Cream Recipe
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe
1x 400ml (13.5 fl oz) can Trade Aid coconut milk
1x 450g (16 oz) can pineapple chunks in natural juice
1/2 can condensed milk
grated zest of 1x lime
Place all ingredients in blender, and blitz until the pineapple is completely crushed and everything is well combined.
Pour everything into an ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer's instructions.
Turn ice cream into freezer proof container, and place a piece of baking paper directly over the surface of the ice cream (helps to stop it turning icy).
Remove from freezer 10 to 15 minutes before serving to soften slightly.
If you would like to get to know Nigel Slater a little better, and to see what everyone else has cooked up this week, then do go and visit my friends at I Heart Cooking Clubs and check out the links ...
I will also be submitting this post to Sweet New Zealand. Inspired by Alessandra Zecchini, and hosted this month by Michelle at Munch Cooking, Sweet New Zealand is an event for all Kiwi bloggers (whether living at home or abroad), or all foreign bloggers living in New Zealand, to link up their sweet treats.
I'll also be sharing this post this week at See Ya In the Gumbo hosted by the delightful Michelle at Ms. enPlace, at Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads, and at Foodie Fridays hosted by Designs by Gollum.