That is what the Megan said when I mentioned writing a post about this new flavor of ice cream we just made. So, I’m just going to let her thoughts stay right there.
You all know I’m very much willing to try new things, especially in the world of food. Some of them have worked, like Gulab Jamun, and others… not so much. So when I mentioned that I wanted to make red bean ice cream, nobody said “Hey, that sounds awesome. You should share the recipe. Us Americans, we only consider beans for savory options, usually chili. We pretty much have our prototype and that’s about it.
The Chinese, on the other hand, don’t give it a second thought. It’s a wonderful treat often shared to celebrate the Lunar New Year. The Japanese use bean paste in sweet preparations such as mochi and popsicles. Megan has even experimented making bao with black beans and peanut butter, which turned out to be a really good combination.
The ice cream by itself is pretty good. I’m finding that a custard base ice cream gives a much better mouth-feel than non-custard bases. It has a hint of sweetness mingled with that great umami taste. (Umami is the fifth taste sensation. There’s sweet, sour, bitter, salty, and umami. It’s kind of like meaty, but not always applied to meat, per se. Meatiness is the best word for it, even if it’s a vegetarian dish or ice cream.)
But, once you add the chocolate syrup, that’s when it changes into the wonderful dessert. I’m not saying to slather it in chocolate-flavored palm oil, but a modest drizzle of chocolate brings it all together into a cohesive dish.
I don’t want to say “if you’re brave” because bravery has nothing to do with this. But if you’re willing to break out of the American prototype for foods, then red bean ice cream is a great way to break the ice.