This recipe came about for two reasons: first, the continuing quest for dairy-free desserts; second, DEB's love for ice cream. Finding an entirely dairy-free ice cream recipe has proved to be a bit of a struggle. Substituting non-dairy cream for the real thing was never going to happen. We've had one experience with non-dairy cream and it was possibly one of the most bizarre and terrifying things we've ever done in a kitchen. It shall not pass our portals again. Besides, it just tastes unpleasantly synthetic. As for recipes calling for tofu, that was perhaps taking us a step too far down the non-dairy route. So we investigated, we contemplated, we amalgamated, and we contemplated some more, and we devised this. We were quite pleased with it.

That is, we were pleased with the flavour and the texture. We were not so enamoured by the colour: it was a peculiar shade of grey. You might do well to add some food colouring to it at the adding-the-coconut-milk stage. We thought pink, to make it look like coconut ice.

Yes, this recipe does contain raw eggs, which means that you probably shouldn't feed it to young children, pregnant women, or anyone frail or unwell. You should use the freshest eggs that you can find, and organic, too, if you can manage it. Failing organic, use free range, please. Happy chickens lay happy eggs.

There's nothing to stop you from making this if you don't have a sorbetière. In fact, there is nothing to stop you from making any ice cream without a sorbetière. What you need is a mixer (an electric hand mixer is sufficient), a freezer, and a few spare hours.

Ingrediments serves eight (ish)

  • 190g (6oz) caster sugar (We used golden)
  • 2x 400g (14oz) cans coconut milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1tbsp Malibu rum (Okay, we apologise for this addition, which makes the recipe kitsch beyond belief. But trust us for the super-coconuttiness it gives, and how it prevents the ice cream from setting rock solid.)


Whip together the eggs and sugar until thick, creamy, and doubled in volume.

Now slowly pour in the coconut milk and the Malibu, beating constantly.

When everything has been amalgamated, pour the mixture into something large, shallow, sealable, and freezer-proof.

Place in the freezer for one hour.

After an hour, remove the container from the freezer and beat the contents, incorporating all the frozen chunks that will be amassing at the sides. Return the box to the freezer.

Repeat the process an hour later and then leave the almost ice cream to freeze for at least six hours, or overnight.

You might find that you need to remove the ice cream from the freezer roughly half an hour before you want to serve it, so that it can ripen.

It's ice cream. Serve it as you would any other ice cream. By itself. Or with an apple and coconut tart. Or with pineapple upside-down cake. Or as we did, with chocolate and ginger cake, still warm from the oven.