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Thursday, October 1,2009

Coconut Walnut Ice Cream

By Danette Randall

Back to beautiful Colorado from the beautiful Riviera Maya, Mexico. I'm having a hard time adjusting to no cerveza on the beach.

Is it too much to ask for someone to bring me a tequila while I stare out at the turquoise blue water from my beloved palapa? I know, I sound like the Corona commercial. I stayed at a fabulous resort Catalonia Royal Tulum.

This place is so wonderful. I'm not sure there are more hospitable people anywhere. The beach is unbelievable soft sand and mesmerizing water. I love that from Colorado it's only a little more than a three-hour flight to paradise. OK, I said I would be doing some research, and in fact I did. I took it upon myself to make sure and try anything sweet, fruity or chocolatey, all for you.

Sometimes the sweet and fruity had a little rum or tequila but, hey, when in Mexico... The bartenders at the Catalonia always took it upon themselves to add an extra shot: "Lady like tequila." Hmmmm. Guess they had met me somewhere before. I really love the ice cream down there. Mexico has the best ice cream. The flavors are so pure nothing artificial going on there. I love the coconut, and I love the avocado ice cream even more. Yep, avocado ice cream. It is smooth, flavorful and heavenly. Of course, in the tropical heat anything that cools you off is a treat. There is a brand I love called Maresa, and it is made on Holbox Island, which is on the northern side of the Yucatan Peninsula. I will be looking into where I can purchase it in the States and pass it on.

YUMMY! So all and all, I came back with more than a great tan, and even with the good food at the resort and the sweet treats and fruity drinks I was still able to squeeze into my swimsuit at vacation's end. SUCCESS. Good thing I'm worried about the important things! Actually, I came back with lots of vanilla (of course) and a new favorite resort. Catalonia Royal Tulum fit the bill, and now I'm back and ready to dive into fall dessert mode. Well, after this recipe, because we are making Coconut Walnut Ice Cream, one last reminder of the ocean and tropical heat that I love so much. And by all means, feel free to top off your bowl of ice cream with a little shot of rum. "Lady like tequila?" Now, follow the directions, put some love into it and invite me over when it's done.

BEFORE YOU START: This recipe requires a twoquart ice cream maker. Use real cream and whole milk for the richest flavor. Use pure vanilla.

COCONUT WALNUT ICE CREAM

1-1/2 cups whole milk

1-1/4 cup granulated sugar

3 cups heavy cream

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3/4 cup flaked coconut

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

In medium mixing bowl, whisk the milk and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Stir in the heavy cream and vanilla. Turn on your ice cream maker. Pour the mixture into the freezer bowl and let mix until thickened. About 25-30 minutes.

At 20 minutes in, add coconut and walnuts and continue until done.

When finished, ice cream will have a creamy, softer texture. If you prefer a firmer texture, transfer ice cream into an airtight container and let freeze about 1 1/2 hours. Let sit 10-15 minutes before serving. Scoop into bowl and enjoy!

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