Bring on the Ice Cream! Bang Bang Ice Cream & Bakery and Sweet Olenka’s

Just like cupcakes, froyo, and macarons were popping up everywhere just a while back, ice cream sandwiches have been the biggest thing lately! So far, we’ve tried them from 3 different places: Moo Milk Bar (see this post), and more recently, Bang Bang Ice Cream & Bakery and Sweet Olenka’s. Let the ice cream sammie adventures begin!

Bang Bang Ice Cream & Bakery

Bang Bang Ice Cream

Ginger Cookie + Bellwoods Stout Ice Cream; Birthday Cake Cookie + PB&J Ice Cream

Bang Bang has become really popular as of late, so Matt and I had to wait in line with the many others hoping to try their ice cream sandwiches. Luckily it was a nice night and the line moved fairly quickly. They make all the ice cream sandwiches on the spot and there are various options to choose from. In addition to picking between a half sandwich (1 cookie) or a full sandwich (2 cookies), you can also opt for a macaron ice cream sandwich or an ice cream puff. There are also a variety of ice cream flavours and cookies to choose from! Matt had the PB&J ice cream with a birthday cake cookie, while I went with the Bellwoods Stout ice cream and a ginger cookie. We also got an Everything cookie (chocolate, peanut butter, pretzels, and oats) to go, which we had with some vanilla frozen yogurt the night after. Delish! 🙂

Bang Bang Ice Cream on Urbanspoon

Sweet Olenka’s

Sweet Olenka's

Pear Caramel Ice Cream; Salted Caramel Ice Cream Sandwich

The Queen West location of Sweet Olenka’s is literally around the corner from Bang Bang, so there’s plenty of ice cream goodness in the area! We went today, and the decisions were endless—they have handmade ice cream, ice cream bars, ice cream sandwiches, chocolates, and baked goods! While their ice cream sandwiches are also handmade, they aren’t made-to-order. To be honest though, that really didn’t matter because their salted caramel ice cream sandwich is absolutely AMAZING! We shared that and the pear caramel ice cream, which was also really good (think refreshing and sweet at the same time). We’ll definitely have to go back!

Sweet Olenka's on Urbanspoon

Easy Smoothies: Mint + Watermelon + Frozen Banana

When it comes to smoothies, the options are endless! I was apprehensive about the watermelon-banana combo, but it turned out to be delish 🙂

Blend!Sunday Smoothies!

Ingredients*

  • 1 cup of watermelon, cubed
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • Leaves from ~2 sprigs of mint
  • 1 cup of coconut water

*These are the amounts I used for our 2 smoothies, but the beauty of smoothies is that you can adjust everything to your liking!

Directions

Put all the ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth!

Easy Avocado “Gelato”

After I tried making banana “ice cream”, one of my friends N sent me a recipe for avocado “gelato” (from this Tiffany Cruikshank Yoga Facebook post), which sounded delicious and easy to make, so I had to give it a try!

I whipped some up today and loved it! I know some people aren’t keen on avocados, but if you like them, this recipe is a must try.

Avocado "Gelato"
Ingredients
  • Half an avocado*
  • 1 cup of frozen fruit (we used mangoes)
  • 1 Tbsp of honey
  • 1/4 cup of coconut water

*A lot of people laugh about seemingly useless kitchen tools, but this all-in-one avocado tool is my friend (Crate & Barrel has since started selling a fancier one)… removing the seed with a knife always came with a risk of slicing my hand open! 😛

Directions

Throw everything into the blender and blend until smooth!

A couple weeks ago, I was lamenting about my potentially wrong decision to purchase a new blender because we haven’t used it that much lately, which Matt pointed out today as I excitedly blended and tasted my frozen avocado treat (darn, he does pay attention to what I say!). I guess it was a good idea afterall! Looking forward to trying other healthy blender recipes soon 🙂

2-Ingredient Frozen Treat: Banana “Ice Cream”

I love ice cream, frozen yogurt, and other dairy-based frozen treats as much as the next person, but this dairy-free, healthier option seemed too easy not to try!

Ingredients
  • 3–4 bananas (unlike the bananas in my photo below, the riper, the better)
  • Optional: peanut butter, Nutella, cocoa powder, vanilla, honey, or other fruit
Directions
  1. Peel and slice bananas and put them into a freezer bag or container.
  2. Once the bananas are frozen, blend them in a food processor or blender.
  3. Add the optional ingredients (if desired) and blend until smooth.

Banana "Ice Cream"!

I cannot stress the importance of Step 1! I obviously wasn’t thinking and made the mistake of throwing the bananas in the freezer whole—using a knife to remove the frozen peels and spending more time blending bigger chunks of banana = unnecessary extra work!

When first blended, the frozen bananas transform into a crumble, which gradually turns into smoother chunks. You may need to stop the blender/food processor intermittently and use a spoon or spatula to scrape the mixture off the sides and to push unblended chunks closer to the blades. Eventually, though, you should achieve a creamy consistency!

As you can see, I used peanut butter, but my friend also recommended cocoa powder. I’ve read about the other optional ingredients listed above, so I’m excited to try something different next time!