Woman Crush Wednesday — I mean Guest Blogger Wednesday! Well, it has basically become the same thing over here at Paleo Parents. By now I am sure you know that each Wednesday we feature a different gluten-free or paleo blogger that we have been crushing on lately. Gina, from So…Let’s Hang Out is just about the cutest, quirkiest, funniest blogger we have seen in a while…. not to mention she makes some pretty amazing recipes! We love her style, and we know you will too. Keep reading to see exactly what we mean…
Hey there, Paleo Peeps! My name is Gina and I blog over at So…Let’s Hang Out. It’s my little corner of the web where all the food is gluten-free, friendship is celebrated, and high fives are encouraged. There may also be the occasional overshare about just how much chocolate I tend to find melted all-up in my bra (lots) or what happens when you try to cook bacon without pants on (hello, thigh splatter). Is this too much too soon? Oh, well. I’m going to feed you cake. Perhaps it’ll soften your hearts to my awkward introduction. I’m hoping we can become fast friends.
I’m so excited to be hanging out on this side of the interwebs today! When the folks over at Paleo Parents contacted me and asked me to do a little guest post, I got really excited. I knew I wanted to make you all something special! Something celebratory! Something a little bit crazy (because, well –.that’s just how I roll). So, like any good food blogess, I made my way to the kitchen.
What followed was a little bit of magic and a whole lot of insanity. One of the things on my summer bucket list was to make a healthy ice cream cake. How hard could it be, right? So I decided this might be the perfect time to make this ice-creamy dream a reality.
The thing is, I had just finished a Whole 30. So really, anything and everything sounded like it needed to belong in my face. My thoughts raced with anticipation. Dessert? Yes. Why stop at ice cream cake? Let’s make a carrot cake crust. Delightful! Hmm… how about we top it with CHEESECAKE?! Folks, I had lost my restraint. Nuts, carrots, bananas, and maple syrup went flying. There were unsweetened coconut shreds in my bangs. It got real.
When it came time to test the cake, it made my taste buds dance like they were on an episode of Soul Train! The spice of the carrot cake in the crust–the sweet and creamy banana ice cream layer followed by the tanginess of lemon cheesecake. Hubba hubba. Did I mention that this whole thing is raw and can be made without turning on your oven? It’s summer. We’re already sweating enough without turning on our ovens, amiright? Let’s keep things cool. Plus, since this frozen treat is raw, grain-free, vegan, paleo, refined sugar free, gluten free etc– you can feed it to almost anyone! This might be the catalyst for world peace. I might be stretching things a bit, but it’s pretty dang allergy friendly!
When it came to writing about my creation I froze (I think there’s an ice cream cake joke in here somewhere…oh, well). If you’re curious, it took exactly three bloggers to name this here cake (I ask for help when I need it). What we came up with is totally wordy, and a little bit intense. I know. But, it’s better than my initial impulse to just hastag it #ThisCakeBeCrayCray or simply #PartyInYourMouthCake. Phew. Crisis averted.
Well, this has been a ton of fun! I hope that all of you are enjoying your summer! Eat all the ice cream cake and keep it cool! I hope you’ll come and visit me over in my neck of the interweb-woods sometime soon! xox
- 1 ½ cups shredded carrots (approximately 2 medium carrots)
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 cup raw cashews
- ½ cup finely-shredded coconut (unsweetened)
- 8 Medjool dates, pitted
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 5 frozen bananas (frozen without their peels)
- 1 tbs. vanilla extract
- 2 tbs. coconut milk
- 2 cups raw cashews (soaked for 2 hours, or up to overnight)
- ½ cup coconut oil, liquid state
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- zest of 1 lemon
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 cup wide chip coconut shreds
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- If you haven’t already, put 2 cups of raw cashews in some water to soak. Your cashews should be completely submerged. Soak them for two hours or up to overnight. This will help to soften the nuts and make your cheesecake layer extra creamy!
- Start on your crust. Put all of the ingredients listed under Carrot Cake Crust into your food processor and pulse it together until it forms a sticky dough. It’s going to be the consistency of a raw bite. Sticky, but you’ll still be able to identify small chunks of almonds, carrots and such. Once your dough has formed, take out a 9 inch spring form cake pan and press the ingredients for the crust into the bottom of the pan. Make sure the entire bottom is covered. It helps to use your palms, as the heat from your hands works with the oils and helps make everything stick together.
- After your crust is laid out in the bottom of your pan, you can start on your ice cream layer. Put five frozen bananas into your food processor along with your vanilla extract and coconut milk. Blend together until a smooth ice cream forms. It might take a few minutes as well as some scraping down the sides of the bowl. Once your ice cream is ready, layer it on top of the crust, and spread it out in an even layer. Put the cake pan in the freezer while we complete our last steps.
- After your cashews have soaked, strain them and give them a good rinse. Place them into your food processor along with coconut oil, maple syrup, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Process on high until it is smooth and creamy. There shouldn’t be any chunks left. Remove your cake pan from the freezer and pour this layer on top. Spread it out evenly to cover the banana layer.
- Over medium heat, toast up your coconut chips, walnuts and cinnamon in a small frying pan. Stir frequently. When the nuts become fragrant and the coconut chips start to brown it’s ready to be removed from the heat. Pour this mixture over your cheesecake layer as a garnish. Put the entire cake back in the freezer and freeze for 6 hours or overnight.
- Once the entire cake is frozen, it is ready to eat! Unclip the spring form part of your pan to reveal all the layers of your cake. You might need to thaw it slightly before cutting, since it is rather thick. It will keep in the freezer for up to a week, but I doubt it will last that long! Enjoy!
Connect with Gina!
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Gina is a writer, photographer and recipe developer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. She’s passionate about good food, gluten-free cooking, polar bears, dancing like nobody’s watching, texting using only emojis and she doesn’t hesitate to kiss her dog on the lips. When she’s not cooking up a storm or writing for her blog So…Let’s Hang Out, you might find her spending time with her husband, doodling polar bears in top hats, or crafting questionable puns.
To hang out with Gina, you can connect with her here: