I remember running through the field as a child, grass tickling my ankles, as I shrieked in delight, soaking in the sunlight. My hair was much like it is now, neither long nor short, as it tickled my chin.
And what was I running to?
I tumbled into the waiting arms of my parents, when I was small as they were large. My mother was much like she is now, sticking to the shade of trees. The image of the black picnic mat (which we later lost) is still imprinted in my mind. If I recall correctly, she had donned a sparrow-blue tank top then.
The sun scorched as we walked back the ice-cream shop, and whilst they favoured ice lollies, my chubby adolescent hands clutched an ice cream cone, complete with the swirl of vanilla-bliss which every child has an urge to lick the tip of. It melted so soon, so fast, leaving behind nothing except a few crumbs on my hands and the milkfish-taste-which-later-turns-sour upon my lips.
Ice cream has a crucial part in the upbringing of (almost) all children. No matter what gender, age, and race they are, it's an essential staple of the formula for growing-up. Today, there's Couch Potato, rum and raisin, cherry Garcia, strawberry cheesecake and what other flavours, god forbid, that Ben and Jerry's have whipped up. But no matter what, the most basic trinity remains - strawberry, chocolate and vanilla. It's gone now, faded by the sands of time, but the flavour which overpowers me with nostalgia is one of vanilla, and coloured with pastel shades of the rainbow.
A few weeks ago, when my henna was freshly applied (I look to my hand now and see only a faded imprint), I baked something like never before - vanilla cupcakes (which are admittedly tasty enough) in ice cream cones. Yes, in ice cream cones! I rather enjoyed surprising others with a dainty ice cream cone, only to yield a chewy, sweet mouthful of cupcakes.
There are slightly denser than normal cupcakes, but more delicious nevertheless (allow me to indulge in self-praise for a moment here). In ice-cream cones, due to being unable to locate the paper liners after whisking together everything, I resorted to these cones in a moment of desperation. To my utter surprise, they weren't browned and 'chao-ta'ed (burned), but lightly crisped.
Top with greek yogurt, fruits, sprinkles, chocolate sauce, and anything else you fancy! After all, you're a child once more!
Vanilla Ice Cream Cupcakes
1 c flour (I used whole wheat)
1/4 c sugar, or other granulated sweetener
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 c milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 tbsp. coconut oil / any other oil / melted butter
6 small ice cream cones (flat based)
1. Preheat oven to 180c. Combine milk, vanilla extract and oil.
2. Sift together flour, salt, sugar, baking powder.
3. Pour wet mixture into flour mixture and mix well. It should form a thick paste.
4. Scoop evenly into the ice cream cones and bake, upright, for 20 mins. I placed them in a mini muffin pan and changed the side at the 10 minute mark. Ensure that it's cooked when a cake tester / toothpick comes out clean.
5. Remove and let cool for 5-10 mins.