Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Figgy banana soft serve parfaits

Today is one of England's glorious spring days. The sunshine is warm (but not too warm!), spring flowers are out, the sky is blue, and I am consciously and joyously grateful that we live where we live. It is a good day to be outside, and consequently, a good day to be on maternity leave and not in an office.

I can't share our weather with you, but I can share this easy ice cream recipe that will help you herald in your own spring sunshine. If you are in the southern hemisphere, it can help you cling on to summer instead!

There is some debate over whether figs are suitable for vegans or vegetarians*. I was horrified when I learned, some years back, that figs are pollinated by wasps who then die and remain within the fruit. Every time I thought of eating a fig, I thought of eating dead wasp and was consequently put off. In truth, the wasps are broken down by enzymes within the fruit and so you won't be eating a wasp as such. Nonetheless, some vegans still choose to avoid figs and fig-containing products. As this post would suggest, I am not in that category, although I don't eat them regularly.

This recipe could be as simple as blending frozen banana and dried figs and transferring the mixture to a bowl. I made a figgy paste first, which I highly recommend, but you will have more paste than the ice cream requires. It could be used on top of porridge or yoghurt...or you could just make more ice cream to use it up.

Figgy banana soft serve parfaits
Makes approximately 1 cup of fig paste and 2 ice cream parfaits
Vegan (depending on your view on figs), low in fat, gluten free

Food processor required

Author: Bite-sized thoughts

For the figgy paste
1 cup / approximately 150g dried figs
1 tsp vanilla

For the soft serve ice cream
2 medium frozen bananas

Make the fig paste by combining the figs and vanilla in your food processor and blending until the mix is semi-smooth and clumping together. Transfer to a bowl or container.

Add the bananas to your food processor (no need to clean), along with 1 tbsp of the fig paste. Process until the bananas are smooth.

To create the parfaits, add approximately one-quarter of the banana mixture to a parfait glass, dot over a few small dollops of the fig paste, and then top with another quarter of the banana mix and a few more dots of fig paste. Repeat to make the second parfait.

* The packet of dried figs I bought from Lidl was proudly labelled as suitable for vegans and vegetarians, so the company either doesn't know of the fig production system or chooses to see it as irrelevant to plant-based eating.

Submitted to Healthy Vegan Fridays.

What is your weather doing this week?


  1. Glad you are able to enjoy this glorious weather on your maternity leave - interesting to hear about the figs - I have heard of this before but it is so weird it is hard to remember - makes me wonder if there are other fruit and veg where insects are involved. I hope there are theses being written on all the ethical questions it throws up.

    1. I am laughing at the thought of a PhD on the topic :D

  2. Yummo - this sounds so good. I do like figs and always have dried ones on hand.

    1. I think I may too after enjoying them in this :-)

  3. What?! I didn't know that about figs. Oh my goodness. That's sad. And gross. Hmmm. I'll have to think about that.
    Your parfait does sound really good though. I tend to swap dates for figs in general just because dates are so much easier to find here. I may try that.
    Hope you're still enjoying some nice weather =)

    1. I guess any dried fruit would work, and avoid the fig issues!

  4. I have read that if you can get figs from cooler weather places like Canada, the wasps don't pollinate these (at least that's what I heard from my Canadian vegan blogger friend).

    I'm going to get some Canadian figs and totally try this out - sounds delicious! And so glad you're having some nice weather for your maternity leave. :)

    1. Aha! Clearly Canadian figs are the way to go - thanks for that bit of information :-)


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