ice cream & sorbet

blackberry – acai popsicle (vegan)

2nd September 2016


A gorgeous coloured blackberry sorbet in celebration with the season, with the added benefits of acai – a recipe for the Holmes Place magazine; an ongoing concept of ‘superfoods ‘ throughout the year.

‘Acai is a rich, deep purple fruit which is similar in shape to a grape and has a mild chocolate berry sweetness. These berries grow in huge clusters near the tops of palm trees, which grow in the Amazon rain forests. Each Acai berry contains just 10% fruit and pulp and a large seed, which has no benefits, so harvesting this fruit is laborious since the tree has no branches and each cluster of berries needs to be cut and brought down manually in order to preserve the fruit and pulp.  Within the nutritional pulp and skin, Acai berries are packed with antioxidants, amino acids, fibre, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. It helps to increase your antioxidant levels, boosts your energy levels, supports your immune system and helps to promote a healthy digestive system.’

There are three basic ways to add acai to a recipe: acai powder, acai juice and acai frozen smoothie packs. Here, I choose to use the powder which is more widely available and which has been freeze-dried instantly to preserve the active components and is not overly processed. The powder can be added to smoothies, juices, home-made ice creams, sprinkled over your morning porridge or added into raw treats.




Blackberry-Acai Popsicle

Makes 9 small popsicles

If you don’t have blackberries, try a different berry variety, blueberries, raspberries or even strawberries.  For a creamier sorbet, replace the apple juice with coconut cream by refrigerating a tin of coconut milk and scooping out the white thick cream on top.   If you don’t have access to acai powder, it can be easily omitted. 


3 cups fresh blackberries, washed

2 medium ripe frozen bananas

½ cup unsweetened apple juice or fruit juice of choice

2 tsp acai powder

2 Tbsp natural sweetener of choice (coconut sugar, maple syrup or honey)


1.  Wash the berries and place in a high-speed blender or food processor, along with the peeled frozen bananas, apple juice and acai powder – blend until smooth and creamy, stopping if you need to push the fruit down with a rubber spatula.  

2.  Taste, and add sweetener, if required.  Blend again to incorporate the sweet.

3.  Spoon or pour into your popsicle holders, and freeze until firm or enjoy as is, for an instant treat. When ready, pull the popsicle out of their moulds by running them under some warm water. 


References –

Goodness shared by Stacey

mango passionfruit sorbet (vegan)

6th August 2016


I photographed this before I left for our holiday. We travelled for almost 2 days and a bit, arriving in a bit of a daze – a haze. Finally, with our feet on earthly ground and toes in the sand.  The jet lag is HUGE but worth every moment of breathing in all these scents and sounds which are so familiar.  The early, early mornings are my most favourite, most alive, sitting out on the deck, watching the sky change its colour from black to blue to pink to orange – so brightly. And with it all, along comes the eerie call of the curlew, followed by a kookaburra and then the screech and squawk of the white-crested cockatoos.  Australia is a beautiful country.


Glorious days, white sands & soft, glowing, clear skies.


mango passionfruit sorbet

Serves 6

This is incredibly quick and easy, with a remarkable end result of a golden-coloured smooth, refreshing sorbet for these hot Summer days or as a light evening treat to end a meal.


3 heaped cups/650g fresh ripe mango (2 large mangos)

6 – 8 passionfruit

2 Tbsp mild-tasting honey/maple syrup (optional)


1.  Peel and chop the mango flesh into large chunks and place in a blender or food processor. Run your hand over the seed to remove as much of the mango pulp and juice as possible – blend until smooth and creamy. Set aside.

2.  In a medium jug, halve the passionfruit and scoop out the pulp.

3.  Pour the mango puree into the jug and stir to combine with a spoon.

4.  Transfer the mixture to an ice-cream maker and churn for about 25 – 30 minutes, or to the manufacturer’s instructions, until frozen.  The sorbet will be soft.

5. Transfer to a container, cover and freeze for at least 3 hours or until completely frozen.

When ready to serve, allow to soften outside for 15 minutes before scooping into bowls.  Garnish with leaves of fresh lemon verbena and bright, edible flowers.

If you don’t have an ice-cream maker, freeze the cut mango until solid.  Place in a blender with the honey and blend until smooth.  Stir in the passionfruit pulp and place in the freezer until it just starts to harden around the edges.  Whisk vigorously with a fork to break up any ice crystals, then freeze until firm.


Goodness shared by Stacey

banana coconut vanilla bean ice cream with grilled plum & pecan crumb (vegan)

2nd July 2015


It’s coming up to three years since we moved into this house from Israel.  At that time, we had just missed the plum season.  It was only the following year that this little plum-tree gave us a grand and decadent welcome, and now each year it never disappoints.

This particular tree is so abundant in fruit that I am always afraid the branches may break under the weight of it all.  It is a truly remarkable tree – to me, it tastes the very essence of Summer.  A full, luscious honey-flavoured Summer.  For the perfect plum, you need to catch it right at that moment just before it starts to soften that little bit too much. This is a delicate moment because, in just a week, they will all start to drop.

The swans and ducks enjoy them, but only the swans with their long necks can actually grab them from the tree itself.  They also keep the ground clean, and I think that they swallow the pips and all, as there is no evidence of any fallen fruit. But the tree looks lighter with each day.


Each evening after my dinner, I stroll the garden, pluck one or two off the tree, judging them by their colour only – I know which ones are just perfect for eating.  The slightest touch and they fall into my hand without any effort.  I find a spot to sit and eat, to enjoy my sweet end to an evening meal.  A moment of quiet.  There is a feeling of contentment and deep gratitude from this simple pleasure. Maybe it is the silence at that time of day or the light. Mostly I think it is a combination of both.

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lightly grilled plum & pecan crumb

When plums are not available, try with apricots, peaches or nectarines.

Serves 4 


¼ tsp ground cardamom

½ cup pecans, macadamia or nuts of choice

1 date – seed removed

8 small ripe plums

2 Tbsp honey/maple syrup


1.  Preheat the grill.

2.  Place the nuts, date and cardamom in the blender and pulse until the mixture becomes a fine crust, pour into a bowl and set aside.

3.  Cut each plum in half and remove the stone.  Place the halves on a baking tray, cut side upwards and scoop a spoon of the nut crumb into the pit of each plum.  Lightly drizzle each plum with honey/syrup.  Place the tray about 6 inches from the heat, and grill/broil for about 3-4 minutes, until the nuts are slightly golden.  Allow to cool for a couple of minutes while preparing the banana ice cream.


instant banana, coconut, vanilla bean ice-cream

Recipe from ‘ Kind Ice-cream for You’

This instant ice-cream is remarkably easy, yet so creamy.  The added coconut cream softens the banana taste and is a perfect way to enjoy the fresh fruits of the season.  Placing the coconut milk in the fridge allows for the milk and cream to separate, and for the cream to rise to the top for easy scooping. I keep the left-over liquid to add to soups or smoothies.


2 frozen bananas  – peeled, cut and frozen for at least 4 hours, or overnight

1 can (400mL) full fat coconut milk (refrigerated overnight)

1 vanilla bean

1 Tbsp honey/maple syrup


1.  Open the coconut milk can and scoop out the thick, solid white cream, add the coconut cream, frozen bananas, and honey/maple syrup to a blender.

2.  Run a knife down the length of the vanilla bean, scrape out the seeds and add to the blender – blend until smooth.  You will have to scrape down the sides of the blender a couple of times until it forms a smooth texture.

3.  Scoop into glasses and place one or two plums on top and drizzle with a little more honey/syrup.  Serve immediately.


Goodness shared by Stacey

raspberry coconut ice cream & a childhood story

25th June 2015


My fondest memories are of eating bowls full of homemade ice cream.  My mother’s recipe was very different from this and was made with condensed milk and sugar, wickedly sweet.

When I was younger, we would spend our holidays in a hut on an island off the North Queensland coast. I call it a hut because that is what it was – corrugated iron walls and roof, wooden beams, a concrete floor.  It was an open plan with bunk beds lined up against one wall for us four girls and my parents to sleep in, and the kitchen and dining room on the other side. The windows were shutters held up by a wooden beam.

I remember coming in hot and thirsty from a day of rock-hopping, swimming, shell collecting or exploring, and sitting down to a cold bowl of homemade, sweet ice cream.  Replenished, we were up and out the door again.  The only way of getting to this island was by boat, and we would take all the supplies we needed for those two months, as there was no electricity or corner store.

We lived on fresh fish, oysters and crab caught and cooked over fires.  The light was by kerosene lamps, and we had two kerosene fridges to keep things cold.  In the later years, we had a generator.

Xmas was always spent with a large gum tree branch decorated with our own hand-made ornaments.  We had a rainwater tank that supplied our water.  Our shower was a tin hanging from the ceiling my parents would fill from the top.  To release the water from the holes made from nails, you pulled a wire lever and the water emptied. It was barely enough time to clean yourself. The hottest part of the day was spent climbing the enormous boulders and lying in its shade, watching and making shapes in the clouds.  Late afternoon was spent sitting on the beach after the tide went out, sifting through the mounds of shells washed in from the ocean, bagging them up to take home.

This ice cream reminded me of those holidays.  It was such a wonderful place where man and technology had not yet spoiled its beauty and peace. Today, there is electricity on the island, but much remains unspoiled.

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Cape Upstart Bay, North Queensland Australia

(I am the younger one, then my sisters Donna, Shelley and oldest, Kerry)


When making ice cream, a blender or food processor is necessary.  If you have an ice cream maker, follow the directions for use.  If you are like me and do not own one, making ice cream without a machine is possible.  It just needs a bit more time and work, and the results come out slightly less creamy but oh-so delicious.

a few tips 

  • Ensure all ingredients are cold before blending and freezing – this helps achieve a good texture.
  • To achieve a rich and creamy texture, it is very important to add fat.  Full-fat coconut milk and nut butter are a great addition to an ice cream mixture.
  • Covering the bowl or container in the freezer is essential to prevent ice crystals from forming.
 raspberry coconut ice cream

Serves 4 – 6

Inspired by this site  (I ended up buying their ice-cream e-book – for a lot more future ice-cream making!)

This was my first attempt at making ice cream, and I must admit I was surprised at how straightforward and easy it was and how delicious the result was.  A perfect welcome to these warmer days. I usually need to try a recipe twice or more before I am content with the final outcome, but there was no need to with this one.  I added a lot of berries as the coconut taste comes through, and the texture balances between ice cream and sorbet.  You could use this as a base and replace it with any berry you would like.


1 can full-fat coconut milk (place the can in the fridge for an hour or overnight before using)

¼ cup liquid sweetener of choice (maple syrup, honey, brown rice syrup) + 2 Tbsp – divided

2 tsp vanilla extract

3 cups frozen raspberries – divided

Line a loaf tin with waxed paper on the base and sides.


1.  Place the cold coconut milk, ¼ cup maple syrup, vanilla extract and 1 cup frozen raspberries in a blender until smooth.

2.  Pour the mixture into a bowl, cover and place the bowl in the freezer – mix with a fork or a small beater every half an hour for three hours.  When mixing, make sure you bring the frozen outer edges into the unfrozen middle.


3.  Just before the last stirring session, add 1 cup whole raspberries and gently stir into the ice cream mixture.

4. Pour the very cold berry mixture into the lined loaf tin for easier scooping.

5.  Place the remaining 1 cup frozen berries and 2 tablespoons maple syrup into the blender or food processor – blend until smooth, then pour this onto the ice cream mixture.

6.  Swirl through with a fork, tightly cover with cling film and place in the freezer until frozen (3 – 4 hours).  Allow to thaw for 15 – 20 minutes before serving.


Goodness shared by Stacey

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