Piña colada smoothie

I had a craving for piña coladas one day, and thought I'd try making them. There were two approaches that came to mind: use frozen coconut milk as the base, or use frozen pineapple juice as the base. Neither sounded creamy enough for what I was going for. Then I remembered our market stocks haupia ice cream (haupia is a traditional Hawaiian coconut-based dessert, not traditionally in ice cream form). Yes! Not to worry, though. If you can't find haupia ice cream, there is another way about it.

Just like it's a good idea to substitute some kind of liquid with flavor for plain old water in cooking, I prefer to exclude ice cubes from my smoothies and use frozen fruits to keep things cold. Ice cubes are tough on the blender and they water everything down.

Following this theory, piña coladas are basically coconut and pineapple juice (and rum), so one of those ingredients needs to be frozen. Roselani haupia ice cream is rich, and makes a great base for this smoothie if you are in the mood for something decadent/comfort drink. Plus it's ice cream, so it is inherently sweet.

The recipe is so simple: two scoops of haupia ice cream and enough pineapple juice to run the blender. A splash of rum is optional, depending on who you are. Garnish with a pineapple wedge. Naturally chilled, smooth, and so delicious!

Now for those that can't find haupia ice cream, or want a healthier version, all is not lost. I would try swapping the frozen ingredients. So instead of haupia ice cream, use frozen pineapple juice with coconut milk. Be sure to shake the coconut milk can well first, as things tend to settle in there. I think this approach would yield a less creamy, more traditional piña colada texture. If you try it, please let me know how it turns out!

What's your favorite tropical drink? If you like pi
ña coladas...

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