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I’m having a bit of an attention span problem writing this post. You see, there are clearly two things on that plate. And to complicate things further, the item on the right really involves two recipes: an outtie and an innie. But I can’t possibly share three recipes at once because I’d violate a self-imposed character limit for post titles.

Not to mention, there would be so many delicious words, you’d have trouble focusing too. So, we’ll begin with the Roasted Buttercup Squash Goat Milk Ice Cream (I know, I know – that alone is a mouthful. I’ll give you a second to wipe the drool from your chin.)

All cleaned up? Good. I bet you’re wondering, “Cara, why goat milk ice cream? Does it taste like goat cheese? It must taste like goat cheese. You are obsessed with all things goat cheese, after all.”

No, it doesn’t taste like goat cheese. Although, goat milk powder (what I used as the base for this recipe) smells like a cross between the neon orange packet of powdered cheese (you all know what I’m talking about) and goat cheese. Pretty foul, might I add. Good thing it doesn’t taste anything like that, once you turn it into ice cream with roasted buttercup squash,  maple syrup, and plenty of spice.

Back to the question, why goat’s milk? Interestingly, goat milk is suitable for some people that struggle with dairy. Although it contains lactose, some lactose-intolerant people can tolerate goat milk, as it’s known to be more easily digestible. And for those that are allergic to the casein protein found in cow’s milk, goat’s milk is free of that.*

That wasn’t my first motivation to use it though. A while ago I discovered Laloo’s Black Mission Fig Goat’s Milk Ice Cream. I bought it on a whim, and I’m so glad I did. This ice cream was rich and creamy, so much so that a half cup serving actually satisfied me (‘fess up: how often do you eat just a half cup? I thought so.) Given its soft, silky texture, one would generally expect that it was laden with tons of fat and sugar. Or chemicals. If you’ve ever tried to make lower fat, lower sugar ice cream or frozen yogurt at home, you’ve probably learned that that it’s nearly impossible without the first two or the last one. Yet, the nutritional label revealed some surprises: at 150 calories per half cup, it read more like a lighter ice cream that I’d buy in the grocery store than a full fat one. And, it did not contain nearly the long list of ingredients that lighter ice creams typically include to make them soft and creamy (manufacturers generally have to add a bunch of stuff to make up for the fat and sugar taken out.) True, it still contained egg yolks and sugar (typical ice cream ingerdients) and a couple of gums (natural emulsifiers) but ultimately the list was quite short, and consisted entirely of words I could read. That’s a good thing. And, it was more than enough to encourage me to try making this on my own.

Of course my first order of business was procuring some goat milk. I discovered powdered goat milk at one of my favorite online stores, Tropical Traditions. This would be my preferred way to buy it, since the powder is shelf-stable and I wasn’t planning to use it all the time. However, you can also buy goat’s milk at many grocery stores and natural food stores, including Trader Joe’s.

Naturally, my Eggland’s Best Pink Party was the perfect place to test out this dessert among friends. Instead of popping open another can of pumpkin (I’m trying to practice a little conservation) I roasted up a buttercup squash and used the creamy, caramelized puree in this ice cream. I do think that this particular squash, freshly roasted, adds a little extra something special to this ice cream, but you can certainly substitute any winter squash puree, homemade or canned. I sweetened the ice cream with a combination of maple syrup and stevia, leaving it free of any refined sugar, and added spices with a somewhat hefty hand. After churning the ice cream and packing it away in the freezer, I nervously awaited the answer to the most important question: Would I be able to scoop it, or would this turn out to be another rock-hard low-fat ice cream fail?

Friends, it turns out that there is something special about goat milk when it comes to making creamy, decadent ice cream without a touch of cream. It just doesn’t need it. My version, though not quite as soft as Laloo’s (I’ll chalk this up to those industrial manufacturing secrets we just can’t replicate at home) was easily scoopable straight from the freezer (even though I chose to give it about 10 minutes on the counter, just to make sure it was perfect for my guests.) Paired with thing-on-the-right (which those of you who read my Pink Party post already know about), it was what I might call the ultimate fall dessert. Full fat ice cream for an indulgent treat… I’ll probably never need to make you again.

This recipe was featured in my Eggland’s Best Pink Party menu, a luncheon I hosted along with Eggland’s Best to support Susan G. Komen For the Cure and raise awareness about the importance of a healthy diet to reduce the risk of cancer. I have a sweet giveaway going on, where three winners will receive a swag bag full of my favorite healthy-living products. Check out my Pink Party post to enter through October 31st!

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Roasted Buttercup Squash Goat Milk Ice Cream

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients:

2oz powdered goat milk +2 cups warm water, or 2 cups goat milk*
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
5 large egg yolks
3/4 cup (180gm) roasted buttercup squash puree*, or other winter squash puree, homemade or canned
1/4 teaspoon liquid vanilla stevia extract
1 teaspoon guar gum

Directions:

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the powdered goat milk and water (or goat milk), maple syrup, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. Whisk to dissolve the goat milk.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth.

When the goat milk mixture is bubbling around the edges, turn off heat. Remove about 3/4 cup and slowly pour into the bowl with the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Pour this mixture back into the saucepan, and turn heat to medium. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until mixture thickens slightly. Pour the mixture into a metal bowl and set inside a larger bowl filled with ice and water. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature, whisking occasionally.

Once the custard base has cooled, pour into a food processor. Add the pumpkin, stevia, and guar gum, and blend until smooth. Return to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.

Churn the ice cream in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions. Scrape into a plastic container, and freeze for several hours, until firm.

*To roast buttercup squash: Cut the squash in half from top to bottom, and scoop out the seeds. Cut each half into 2-3 wedges. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet, and lightly mist with cooking spray. Roast at 375ºF, for about 45 minutes, turning 2-3 times, until very tender. Remove from oven. When cool enough to handle, scrape the flesh out of the skin and puree in a food processor until smooth. Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up 10 days.

Nutrition Facts:

Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 131.0
Total Fat 4.6 g
Saturated Fat 2.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.2 g
Cholesterol 134.3 mg
Sodium 36.8 mg
Potassium 101.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 19.0 g
Dietary Fiber 1.4 g
Sugars 15.3 g
Protein 3.9 g

Cara Lyons, www.carascravings.com

*See Goat’s Milk: A Natural Alternative for Milk Sensitive Patients, at Dynamic Chiropractic.

This recipe is shared on Simply Sugar and Gluten Free for Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, 11/8/2011.

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