Pineapple Guacamole

Pineapple Guacamole

2/3 cup grape tomatoes, chopped (10 to 12)
1/2 cup finely chopped pineapple
3 medium avocados, diced
1/2 finely chopped sweet onion, such as Vidalia
1/8 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
Black pepper
Lime tortilla chips, for serving
Combine the tomatoes, pineapple, avocados, onion, cilantro, lime juice, red pepper flakes and garlic salt in a medium bowl. Add pepper to taste. Serve with lime tortilla chips.

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Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Today I’m sharing a recipe I just tried making for the first time, homemade mint ice cream made with fresh mint. This isn’t just mint flavor here, this is made with the real deal. It gives it so much fresh, natural flavor. I did choose to cut back on the fresh mint by half, just because I didn’t want it to taste to earthy, then I replaced the amount I cut back with real mint extract (which has a less leafy flavor).

This ice cream recipe is definitely going to stay in my recipe book. It is amazing to say the least. The chocolate and mint combination is a classic and this ice cream proves just how well the two ingredients were meant to be together. You just can’t go wrong with an ice cream recipe like this. Enjoy!

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
Yield: About 1 quart

1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup packed fresh mint leaves
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp light corn syrup
4 large egg yolks
1/2 – 3/4 tsp mint extract, to taste*
Green and blue food coloring, optional
3 – 4 oz chopped bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate

In a medium saucepan combined milk, 1 cup cream and fresh mint leaves. Heat over medium heat and bring just to a gentle bubble, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow mixture to steep, 15 minutes. Meanwhile in a bowl, whisk together remaining 1/2 cup heavy cream with granulated sugar, corn syrup and egg yolks until slightly pale and fluffy, about 1 – 2 minutes.
While whisking egg yolk mixture, slowly add about 1/2 cup warm milk mixture to egg yolk mixture (don’t strain leaves yet). Add egg yolk mixture to milk mixture in saucepan and return to medium heat. Cook mixture, stirring constantly until thickened, about 5 – 8 minutes (mixture should coat the back of a wooden spoon. A light bubble is fine but don’t let it boil). Remove from heat and pour mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a heat proof bowl. Using a rubber spatula, rub mint leaves back and forth in over sieve to strain oils and natural flavors from leaves into bowl (also scrap bottom of sieve once done and add that to bowl), discard leaves. Mix in a few drops green and blue food coloring if desired (about 4 green/2 blue). Cover with plastic wrap pressing directly against surface of mixture to prevent a skin from forming. Transfer to refrigerator and allow to thoroughly chill through, about 4 – 5 hours.
Once fully chilled, process mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufactures directions, adding in chopped chocolate during last few minutes of processing. Transfer mixture to an airtight container and freeze until nearly firm (I prefer this ice cream slightly soft for optimal texture. If yo