|durian and coconut ice cream with chopped almond|
Recently I took a bus to Boston (South Station) to see my husband who was there for several meetings. Going to see my husband means I had to walk through Chinatown. I stopped into one of my favorite sandwich (bánh mì) shops called Mei Sum (located at 26 Beach Street, Boston, MA). Usually 2-3 women run the front end dealing with customers. These friendly women speak Cantonese, Vietnamese, and English. One of them can speak Teochew (another Chinese dialect that I passively know). There are a few tables and chairs for customers to sit. Most of these customers are elderly Chinese men socializing with each other while sipping coffee or tea. Visiting this shop always reminds me of my late grandfather and his friends enjoying the same activity every morning at their local coffee shop (in Vietnam). This place sells excellent bánh mì, shrimp or beef rice rolls in small styrofoam containers, cakes, pastries, dumplings, coffee and tea. A few years ago I learned that they sell prepared frozen seedless durian by the pound. One of the ladies proudly informed me that they use the same durian to make their cakes. If you like what some people called the king of all fruit or stinky fruit then you may want to try their delicious durian cake! For any special cakes you may want to call ahead and put in an order. I have been shopping here for years. When they saw me this time they quickly informed me that my husband was in earlier to buy some bánh mì (which I already knew). However, they did not think he bought their fresh rice rolls so I bought a box of the shrimp and a frozen durian package.
In the past I made durian ice cream using heavy cream. This time I replaced dairy for coconut milk for anyone who may be lactose intolerant or may not have access to heavy cream. This non-dairy durian ice cream tastes almost the same as the one that I made using heavy cream. It helps that the durian fruit is creamy in texture. This time I used less sugar (1/3 cup vs 1/2 cup). I like to add crushed roasted nuts on top similar to how it is served in Vietnam. I don't get too excited by ice cream in particular but I eat this despite it being completely firmed. I quickly took a few photographs as my husband commented, "I can smell it, it's very strong." Yet, he ate half of my prop. I guess it was not that bad after all!
Durian and Coconut Ice Cream (makes 1 1/2 quarts)
1) In a blender, puree durian and about 1 cup of coconut milk together until well blended.
2) Put the rest of coconut milk in a medium size pot over medium high heat. Once the liquid starts to bubble turn heat down slightly to a simmer, stir occasionally for about 4-5 minutes.
4) Pour the pureed durian into the pot and cook, stir occasionally for about 4-5 minutes. Add the tempered egg and sugar. Turn off heat and let everything cool completely. Refrigerate the contents until chilled.