Grezzo Restaurant’s vegan ice cream

Got milk? Nope.
By TERRI RUTTER  |  June 18, 2008

It’s cold, creamy, and just in time for summer. But this frozen concoction at Grezzo, the raw-food restaurant in the North End, isn’t your typical ice cream. Made with a base of puréed cashews and the meat from young Thai coconuts, this vegan, all-raw dessert is, like most of the dishes served here, a bit surprising — and delicious.

“We’re really thinking outside the box,” says executive chef Leah Dubois. “We’re not playing by any rules.” Many of Dubois’s ice-cream flavors sound familiar: chocolate, strawberry breeze, chocolate malt, clove. But the ingredients are foreign to most palates. Beyond the completely nondairy base (no cream, milk, or eggs), the chocolate is made from raw chocolate, called cacao. The sweetness comes from agave, and the malt flavor comes from maca root powder. All the fruit is organic.

The ingredients are whirred together in a Vitamix, a powerful blender, to produce a mixture the consistency of a thick frappe. Then it’s churned in a regular industrial ice-cream maker and frozen. The dessert is served cold as an accompaniment to several of Grezzo’s intriguing after-dinner options. But for $13 you can take home a pint of your own.

Flavors change frequently, says Dubois, with five usually available at any given time. They also do special requests, such as a recent order for blueberry.

In addition to the sweet varieties, Dubois has just introduced to the menu two savory sorbets: heirloom tomato, which comes with a salad, and kiwi-cucumber, served as an intermezzo between spicier courses.

Available for $13 a pint at Grezzo Restaurant, 69 Prince Street, in Boston. Call 857.362.7288.

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    Made with a base of puréed cashews and the meat from young Thai coconuts, this vegan, all-raw dessert is a bit surprising — and delicious.
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