First of all: this song. It always makes me cry (in a good way). 

Secondly: this ice cream! Woo! No tears, just tongue. That sounded pretty dirty and I'm gonna leave it that way. I woke up in a good mood. This ice cream is creamy, sweet, and full of chocolate chunks and mint flavour; in other words it's everything ice cream should be and MORE. The "more" is because it's also vegan and made with ingredients that your body actually likes. 

I love me some classic banana ice cream but sometimes a richer version is desired, and this is it. The base for this ice cream recipe is coconut and cashews; sweetened with coconut ice cream, flavoured with mint leaves, coloured with spirulina and mixed in with a decent amount of dark chocolate chunks made with superfoods! Ah, life is like a bowl of mint chocolate chunk ice cream: sweet, refreshing and filled with unexpected delights (this is the highly optimistic version). 

I've been putting a lot of thought into what I want this blog to be, what it is, and what I think it should be. Basically I'm clueless and still trying to figure it out. When I started it around 5 years ago (!) I was just 16 and had no understanding of what I was doing. I literally googled "how do i make a blog" and went from there. The reason I created this blog in the first place was because my parents convinced me I should share my raw recipes - that I kept forcing them to letting them taste - online, so it wasn't even my own idea. I am so grateful I listened to their advice because now I have my actual dream job at a pretty young age. I don't make much money at this, but when I move out, it'll be just enough to live off of. I don't need a big income, I prefer to live minimally. It seems I have made everyone quite proud by being an internationally-published, best-selling author and award-winning blogger by 21, but frankly I still have freak-out moments when I'm like, "What the hell am I doing!? My blog is so lame, my photos aren't good enough, I don't get as many page views or subscribers as I need, and my books don't look as nice as they could."

Honestly, I love myself a WHOLE lot, but I constantly doubt if what I am putting into the world is good enough. I suppose this is normal and in a sense that's a relief, but in another way it doesn't help that much. I set very, very high standards for myself and when I don't meet them, I'm disappointed. Jack has helped me to see that this problem even exists, because I actually didn't realize it before. This isn't a healthy mindset to have, so I am trying to change it (through meditation, thankfulness, self-kindness, self-love and mindfulness) and simultaneously I am always working to improve and get closer to meeting or exceeding my expectations of myself because I do believe it's important for self-growth to always work to become the best version of yourself. 

I do this thing where I compare myself to others all the time, even though in theory I am totally against comparing. I will look at my friends and random people on the street or in movies and think, "I'm not as pretty/thin/fit as them." A response to this kind of thinking begs an entire book and many have been written, but for now I will say: this is toxic thinking! We all have perfectly unique, beautiful bodies and mine is a miracle that lets me live a wonderful, active life. As I just posted on facebook the other day: "Why would I want to look like someone else when I can be me!? Don't get caught up trying to look like another person. Love yourself." I firmly believe this and just need to remember it in times of self-doubt. Another thing I do is look at other blogs I love and compare my photos, recipes and writing to theirs. I get really down when I do this because I think their work is loads better than mine. But then I remember that they're pretty much all in their 30's (except for Izzy, the damn genius), not in school and not living at home anymore. It also seems many of them have background in photography or cooking while I am totally self-taught and still learning. I need to give myself a CHILL PILL. I am perfectly fab the way I am right now, in this moment. 

I never know what these blog posts are going to be about until they're typed out, and then suddenly I have written another online diary entry. I think it's good for me to get this all out. Without further ado: here's some fine-ass raw vegan ice cream. Enjoy, lovelies. 

Makes around 1 litre 

Chocolate chunks:
4 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons this cacao blend (or cacao powder)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons water, as needed

Ice cream:
1 cup fresh young coconut meat
3/4 cup coconut water, as needed
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 cup cashews, soaked for 3 hours in water then rinsed 
1/4 cup coconut sugar 
1/4 cup tightly packed mint leaves 
1/4 teaspoon spirulina powder (optional)

To make the chocolate chunks: melt the coconut oil and then stir all the ingredients together, adding water as needed to get it nice and smooth. Pour onto a plate and put in the freezer until solid. Chop into chunks and leave in the fridge. Go ahead and make more if you want, I did and then drizzled it on top before I scooped the finished ice cream into bowls. 

To make the ice cream: blend everything together, adding coco water as needed. You want it to have the consistency of thick yogurt. Stir in the chocolate chunks by hand. Pour into an ice cream maker and follow its instructions or if you don't have an ice cream maker (like me): pour into a container and put in the freezer, taking it out and stirring everything up every 30 minutes until you get ice cream. 

ADAPTIONS / SUBSTITUTIONS: use coconut butter instead of coconut oil; use water instead of coconut water; use dried coconut meat instead of fresh coconut meat; use avocado instead of cashews; use 1 can coconut milk instead of the coconut meat, coconut water and coconut oil. 

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