Homage to Sunnyside Farms – Banana Ice Cream

When I was a little girl, my family and I would take trips to a place called Sunnyside Farms. It was a farm that had acres of land and stinky cows. Though they did smell, I remember their smell fondly. You couldn’t smell it until you got on that stretch of road that led out-of-town away from the chaos and the confusion that comes with urbanized suburban living. We’d go on summer nights when the sun gave up for the day and allowed us some time to recoup before it rose the next day and tried to beat us down with its merciless rays. It was the perfect mini-retreat.

Just beyond the corn field and the small landing strip for planes, there stood the farm and the little store in front of where the cows slept. Inside the store, you could buy locally grown produce, bread, and milk they got from the stinky cows. The highlight of our trip to the farm was the ice cream they had in the back. It was the most delicious ice cream I’ve ever had. I have always been an adventurous eater, but at Sunnyside Farms I always got the banana ice cream.  It was so delightful. I was (and still am) reluctant to share my ice cream, but when one of the cousins would ask, I would reluctantly comply and watch with a look of suppressed rage on my face as they took a lick of my ice cream cone.

I was upset because when I was growing up, we didn’t keep ice cream in the house. When we wanted ice cream and if we were on our best behavior, we got to go to Sunnyside. Looking back, I realize how lucky I was to have had the kind of care givers who understood the value of whole foods before it was popular. We got ice cream at Sunnyside Farms a few times during the summer and McDonald’s was a place we went maybe 4 times a year.  I was very lucky, indeed.

Sunnyside Farms is a fond childhood memory for me, and sadly, the memories are all we have left. They have since sold the cows and closed the farm and the little store with the best ice cream in the world is no more. The old farmer has since died and they have even changed the road that runs in front of the farm so that it’s more conducive to the building volume of motorists.

This banana ice cream is not even close to what I used to get at Sunnyside Farms, but the flavor reminds me of sweet times growing up in South Jersey.

Ingredients (I found a recipe and adapted it and halved it for the sake of only wanting a little bit of ice cream)

Original recipe on Serving Ice Cream.
3/8 cup vanilla rice milk
1/4 cup turbinado sugar
pinch of nutmeg
3 ripe bananas
2 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp vanilla
Mix the milk, sugar, and nutmeg together with a whisk until sugar is dissolved. I used the whisk attachment to my immersion blender and that worked pretty well.
If using an immersion blender, add the bananas to the mix and blend until smooth. If not, mash the bananas and then add them to the mixture.
Chill entire mixture for at least an hour.
After an hour, add the heavy cream, vanilla, and coconut oil and blend until smooth.
Freeze in your ice cream maker per manufacturer’s instructions.
Enjoy! I divided mine up into three 1-1.25 cup containers and froze it because I’m on a write-down-everything-you-put-in-your-mouth plan. More on that later.
Makes about 3.5 cups of ice cream.
I’m not the greatest when it comes to making ice cream, which may or may not have something to do with the fact that it’s not the least bit Nina Friendly. I am better with sorbets, honestly. You know who makes amazing ice cream?? Chantal Carter. I’ll be posting an update on her VERY soon. Here’s a teaser photo to whet your appetite.

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