I'm SO thankful for coconut milk ice cream. Yum. It makes being vegan a lot easier!
I found it difficult to find a coconut milk IC recipe. Most people use cashew cream, or soy milk. I really wanted to use coconut milk because of the healthy fats, and I think it ends up being creamier and tasting better than soy milk ice cream. A lot of recipes you can find use eggs, so if you don't mind that, go for it! I know whole foods' website has a coconut milk ice cream recipe with eggs.
For totally vegan, here's what I do.
I use a 3:1 or 2.5:1 ratio of coconut milk (full fat) to soy milk but you can also do without the soymilk. The fattier the ice cream, the better, so you can totally just do coconut milk. I save 1/4 cup of milk, mix with 2 TBS arrowroot powder. Set aside. Mix the remaining milk(s) with 3/4 cup sugar (if using 3 cups of milk- adjust if using more/less milk) on stovetop- bring just to a boil. Take off the heat and mix in 1 TBS vanilla and the arrowroot slurry. It will thicken a bit. (this amount of custard makes about 40oz of ice cream)
Chill (very important!) and then mix in ice cream maker according to directions.
For chocolate, just add 2/3 cup cocoa powder and 1/2 cup chocolate chips to the mixture before boiling. Mix well to incorporate melted chocolate chips and cocoa powder.
(I added chopped almonds and dandies vegan marshmallows after running it through the ice cream maker :-) Rocky road! Delish!)
Vegan Scoops is a good recipe book. I just don't like using all soy milk, and prefer the taste and creaminess of coconut milk. So I just sub that in (again, 2:1 or 2.5:1 ratio CM to SM.)
Also, you can add about 1/4 cup liquor (vodka, rum etc) and supposedly that makes it creamier because the alcohol doesn't freeze. Of course, I wouldn't feed a bowl of it to the kids ;-) Buttered rum ice cream sounds good....
I think the coconut milk flavor is undetectable (and I dislike coconut for the most part), but DH can taste it a little. In the chocolate it's obviously more masked. I just made a berry ice cream- I just pureed and strained a mixture of berries and added that to the mixture before boiling- I also adjusted the sugar to make up for the tartness of the berries. It was SOOOO good. I added a chocolate stracciatella so it was kind of like Graeter's black raspberry chip (in cincinnati). YUM
Once you have the basic formula down, you can start experimenting. It's pretty easy! Just taste the "custard" before you chill it and adjust as you see fit. Remember that the sweetness will be subdued when frozen, so make it a little sweeter than you think it should be. It should taste like melted ice cream, of course :-) Let me know if you come up with any other fun flavors. I'm dreaming up one for my birthday..... Maybe cookie dough!