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    Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream (It's vegan!)

    And you thought eating healthy meant no ice cream!

    Think again, my friends. 

    Eating a whole foods and a mainly plant-based diet can (and frankly, should) be oh-so-delicious! And this recipe proves it. 

    Growing up, my favorite ice cream was always mint chocolate chip. There was just something about that flavor combination that really did it for me. No other variety would do. 

    These days, I'm not so much into the dairy. My body is much happier without its pro-inflammatory ways.

    But I still like a sweet treat from time to time! And this Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream is totally hitting the spot.


    THE CHALLENGE

    A few weeks ago - and all thanks to my being a graduate of Meghan Telpner's extraordinary Culinary Nutrition Expert program - I was approached to create a signature dessert recipe for an incredible company called Organics 4 Orphans.

    They're putting together a charity recipe book to raise funds for their cause - which is pretty friggin' awesome, by the way. You can read more about that here.

    But there was a catch!

    The recipe had to include moringa leaf powder.

    I'd been hearing a lot about moringa leaf over the last year or so, so I was immediately intrigued - and up for the challenge.

    But I did have a question...


    WHAT IS MORINGA?

    Welp. It's a powerhouse - is what it is! 

    Gram for gram, moringa leaves contain:

    • 7x the Vitamin C in oranges
    • 4x the Vitamin A in carrots
    • 4x the calcium in milk
    • 3x the potassium in bananas
    • 2x the protein in yogurt
    • an entire multivitamin complex of Vitamins A through Zinc
    • and all the essential amino acids + arginine and histidine (two essential amino acids for infants)

    In addition to my Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream, the moringa plant is also used in:

    • cooking oils
    • high protein animal fodder
    • disease prevention
    • ointments
    • fertilizers
    • insecticides
    • herbicides
    • lubricants
    • dyes
    • plant growth enhancers
    • food condiments
    • honey production
    • cosmetic grade oils
    • wind barriers
    • water treatments
    • erosion control
    • and bio-gas production

    AND the list of illnesses that have (thus far) been proven to benefit from moringa include:

    • AIDS/HIV
    • anemia
    • anxiety
    • asthma
    • bronchitis
    • cholera
    • colitis
    • conjuntivitis
    • diabetes
    • diarrhea
    • dysentery
    • eye and ear infections
    • fever
    • gonorrhea
    • high blood pressure
    • intestinal worms
    • jaundice
    • malaria
    • inflammation of joints
    • respiratory disorders
    • scurvy
    • skin infections
    • stomach ulcers
    • tuberculosis
    • and tumors

    (I know!)

    The most amazing thing about moringa, though, is that it probably has the highest nutrient value of any plant in the world - and yet it only seems to grow naturally where there is extreme poverty. 

    Pretty incredible, right?


    MORINGA IS AWESOME! NOW HOW 'BOUT THAT ICE CREAM?

    Okay - I hear you!

    Let's get to the recipe. It's super easy! (The best kind, right?)

    VEGAN MINT CHOCOLATE CHIP ICE CREAM

    Ingredients:

    2 bananas, peeled and frozen

    1 avocado, peeled*

    1 can coconut milk, solid portion only (scoop it out with a spoon)

    2 tbsp maple syrup

    6 drops Peppermint essential oil (Email me if you're curious about my favorite essential oils!)

    1 tsp moringa leaf powder**

    4 tbsp vegan carob chips (I like the "mini" version); or use your favorite dairy-free chocolate chip 

    * Or substitute a third frozen banana for the avocado

    ** Not 100% necessary, but clearly important for this project - and obviously super good for you!

    Instructions:

    1. Combine bananas, avocado, coconut milk, maple syrup, peppermint essential oil, and moringa leaf powder in high-powered blender. Blend to combine.
    2. Transfer mixture to bowl.
    3. Add vegan carob chips, stirring to combine.
    4. Freeze to desired consistency.
    5. Enjoy!

    And there you have it!

    Feel free to play around with proportions, according to taste. This one's just my personal preference.

    And it sure feels good to know I'm supporting an awesome cause AND eating a green superfood in my ice cream!

    I'll keep you posted on the recipe book! XO