Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Pistachio Halva Ice Cream



This recipe may buck the trend of posting healthy or detox recipes this time of year, but here at the Yogi Vegans we love to eat healthy all year round, and we also love our treats all year round too! So put aside your detox resolutions for a moment and relish this rich dessert with us... you won't find this combo in any shop; Mediterranean flavours of pistachio, almond and sesame halva mingling with just a hint of caramel from the coconut sugar. It would make the perfect ending to a Middle Eastern meal.  My fantasies from last summer about owning a vegan icecream van have been rekindled!

  • Makes just under 2x 500ml tubs (I used old Swedish Glace ones).
  • You don't need an icecream maker for this recipe, but a high speed blender (like our Omniblend or similar) is great for getting air in and enhancing the creaminess.
  • You can use bought sesame halva if you don't want to make it yourself, but if you're vegan watch out for added honey. I prefer home made to avoid all that glucose syrup.
  • The green colouring is because the tan colour of the coconut sugar spoils the delicate green of the pistachios. If you were to use xylitol or stevia instead, you wouldn't need it.


2 cans coconut milk
1 3/4 cups coconut palm flower sugar
1 1/2 cups shelled unsalted pistachio nuts
2 tsps almond essence
a few drops of natural green food colouring (optional)
For the halva:
3 tabs ground sesame seeds
1 tab coconut palm flower sugar
1 tab agave nectar

  • First make the halva by simply mixing the ingredients together. Put it in the freezer so that later on you'll find it easier to break into pieces. You don't need to pre-freeze bought halva as it's quite crumbly anyway.
  • Grind the pistachios as finely as possible. (A high speed blender or a spice grinder will do the trick.)
  • Whizz all the ingredients apart from the halva in your blender until super smooth.
  • Freeze until almost solid- at least 2 hours if your freezer is set at -22 degrees.
  • Remove from the freezer and blend again until smooth. You don't want any ice crystals.
  • Break the halva into small pieces and stir in as evenly as you can. Spoon the cream into a lidded container (s) and return to the freezer until solidified. You will find that this icecream freezes solid, but not so hard that you have to partially thaw it before serving so is easy to scoop from the containers. (It melts pretty quickly though.)
  • Serve topped with chopped or whole pistachios, or for extra decadence drizzle with chocolate sauce, but it really doesn't need it.


Inside the icecream are chewy, delicious little nuggets of sesame halva.