Frozen| Mango Frozen Yogurt … guilt free indulgence

“My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither, but just enjoy your ice cream while it’s on your plate. That’s my philosophy.”
Thornton Wilder

Mango Frozen YogurtThey don’t call the MANGO the king of fruits for nothing! We are well & truly into mango season here in North India, and this luscious, juicy fruit is keeping us happy! To keep in tune with the dieting divas low fat diet, this turned out to be a perfect fit … a Mango Frozen Yogurt which tasted every bit like an ice-cream, rich, smooth & divine, but was sans the cream!Mango Frozen Yogurt Maybe it was the magic of the Thermomix, or maybe this contraption I bought from Sydney recently. Whatever it was, maybe just good proportions, but this was a winner, a perfect fit for July, the National Ice Cream Month.SydneyWhile in Sydney last month, I couldn’t help a quick dash to Victoria’s Basement, a store I love to spend time at. Every nook & cranny is packed with tasteful and exciting things, be it kitchenware, cookware, ceramics, bakeware, small handy gadgets. I got just an hour in the store, and it was like a mad dash. I raced through the store at top speed, grabbing whatever I thought was on my list {and loads that wasn’t}.

One such buy was this Cuisipro – Greek Yoghurt/Yoghurt Cheese Maker. The cheese lover in me looked at it longingly for a precious 10 minutes, then put it back because it was for $20 and I thought it might not be worth it. Mr PAB literally forced me to take it, and that was my best buy this visit. { Disclaimer: I have not been paid to write about the product or the shop. I just love both and thought this worth sharing}.Mango Frozen Yogurt It’s just an innovative little box with a uniquely designed stainless steel strainer that fits within. You ladle your yogurt into it, shut it and leave it in the fridge overnight {or 3 days as in my case} … and voilà! Like magic I got this beautiful very think hung yogurt that I could cut into cubes too.Mango Frozen Yogurt One look at it and I knew there was mango fro yo in the very near future! I had planned on making mango ice cream {with the MacTweets Ice Cream Dreams theme in mind}, but eventually fatless my ice cream was going to be! {I made my hung yogurt with homemade fat free yogurt}.Mango Frozen Yogurt Turned out GREAT! I blitzed frozen diced mango & chilled hung yogurt in the Thermomix which is pure magic for stuff like this. The blades are S T R O N G and result in a mean puree! In the freezer for 3 hours and I was serving pretty yellow scoops! NICE!! I attempted making some pistachio macarons as well, but the high heat and humidity here had other plans … and my feet failed. Not sure if I’ll have time to try baking macarons again this month as our little pooch {Coco} is turning out to be quite a full time job. Look at her. She is the cutest but naughtiest little thing, and currently races around the house like a little rabbit!

Do you want to join us making MACARONS?

If you do, you are most welcome to join us. You can find all the information at our dedicated macaron blog MacTweets. We generally post the round-up by the end of every month, following which a new challenge is posted!

Before I go, I’d like to tell you that Chef Jeff is raffling off some free copies of his new e-book Dinner Revolution, and has offered a few copies for readers of PAB. Do head across to Dinner Revolution and enter his raffle to win a book he says will revolutionize how you cook dinner!The e-book has over 200 healthy and mouthwatering dinner recipes, which have less than 10 ingredients and take less than 30 minutes to prepare. An amazing variety of recipes including vegetarian and simple side dishes …
Caribbean Chicken Quesadilla
Lasagna Roll-Ups
Vegetarian Pad Thai
Shrimp Coconut Curry
Firecracker Shrimp Salad
Southwest Turkey Burgers
Moroccan Carrots
Thai Cucumber Salad
Hamburger Stroganoff
Blackened Red Snapper Soft Tacos

To win an attractive gift hamper of ADFs Ethnic Indian products, click HERE for a simple yet fun contest. 

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Also find me on The Rabid Baker, The Times of India


{No Bake/Frozen} PEACH-GINGER & PLUM-VANILLA GRANITA … bidding adieu to stone fruit

Worldly things were of little meaning. She lived for hamburgers, ice cream, pencil and paper. 
Carol Adams
I’m really really gutted and you might wonder why. I feel as if I lost the first prize and walked away with the consolation prize. At the heart of my misery is my rather late discovery of the granita. Have actually contemplated making it quite often, but never with such a sense of urgency until I saw this post on House of Annie. I was generally googling for something fun and refreshing to do with the last plums and peaches of the season, and this particular post had me gaping! Annie had made peach and plum granita and I just knew what my next sweet stone thing was going to be!
Annie made both granitas but her recommendation on the peach flavours were far more exciting – Peach & Ginger? Yes please! I had the sugar syrup and ginger simmering in no time. Her feedback on the plum granita wasn’t too good, and sent me looking for another. I settled for a Bon Apetit recipe I found on Epicurious. The vanilla bean had my attention, and I am really glad I tried this one.
Both the flavours turned out over the top fantastic which is why I was so cheesed off. Oh to have discovered something so good at the very end of the season! I know how my next stone season  looks  …  a fridge full of granitas for sure! And before I forget, I read somewhere that you scrape the granita with the fork every 30 minutes to keep the ice crystals small! They taste so good once they reach freezing point, that it’s difficult to keep away from stealing a bite. The son ran out of ‘scraping with the fork’ patience, “It’s OK Mama, we can eat it like this!”, while Mr PAB grabbed the fork and said “WTH is this? It’s fab“!

For me, the hard work was the pushing the pulp through the sieve. It took forever, or like forever. Also, my granitas took a whole day before reaching freezing point. Maybe I need a new fridge, maybe… I adjusted the sugar in the plum granita because the plums were quite sour. I also added 2 drops of red food colour as the plums weren’t the dark red ones. You can skip that, but I let them be to give me colour contrast with the peach. Oh yes, one more thing … once out of the freezer, granita melts really fast!

I’ve learnt since that running the plums through a blender is MUCH better than using a processor. Managed to achieve the other thing I had bookmarked and that was this delicious to the last drop plum lemonade, posted here. My last lot of plums were squishily sitting in the fridge till day before, and  now I have them blended. One more thing  on my list to do using plums before we are done with the season, a plum fro yo. Mmmm …

Plum Vanilla Granita

Adapted minimally from Epicurious {Bon Appétit}
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1 1/2 pounds plums, pitted, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
Method:
Combine water, sugar and cinnamon in heavy small saucepan. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean; add bean. Bring to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is reduced to 3/4 cup, about 2 minutes. Cool syrup completely.
Puree the plums in processor. Press enough puree through sieve to measure 1 1/2 cups. Strain syrup into puree and blend well. Transfer mixture to a shallow 9 X 5 loaf tin. Freeze plum mixture until flaky crystals form, stirring every 30 minutes, about 4 hours. After it hardens, use a fork to scrape it up into coarse granules. {Can be made 1 week ahead. Cover; keep frozen}

Peach Granita

1″ piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
7-8 large peaches, stoned
Method:
Slice the ginger into slivers and boil them along with the cup of sugar and cup of water
Cut up the peaches and blend along with the slivers of ginger from the syrup. Then strain the puree through a sieve. To the puree add the juice of one lime, and then the ginger sugar syrup. Pour into a shallow dish and place in freezer. After it hardens, use a fork to scrape it up into coarse granules.
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{Frozen Dessert/No Bake} FRESH CHERRY FRO YO

“My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither, but just enjoy your ice cream while it’s on your plate – that’s my philosophy”
Thornton Wilder
 
He said this is what helped him survive his recent illness. He said that if it were not for this delightful fro yo, he couldn’t have pulled through the last few days of work under the hot sun, on a melting tarmac in temperatures hovering in the mid 40C’s! Yes indeed, Mr PAB gave it a huge thumbs up. However, he left me flummoxed at the thought that someone feeling so ill could even ask for fro yo, and then enjoy it! He could and he did!! The rest of us did too, but we were in the pink of good health! This cheerful frozen dessert is a great way to beat summer …
My love for fruit in desserts, the recent bounty of stone fruit holds me mesmerized, often compelling me to try different recipes, conjuring them up in my mind. There is not much that can go wrong with frozen desserts. If you get the balance of fruit and sugar right, IMHO, the rest pretty much falls into place. This fro yo happened because some home made yogurt I set, well almost 2 kilos of it, were rejected by the lad who didn’t like the taste. I think I left it a tad longer than I should have, so it wasn’t sweet as he likes it. Known not to waste anything, I lost no time in setting it off to drain it in the fridge overnight, it’s fate to be decided the next day. The bowl found it’s place next to a small crate of cherries in the fridge; it’s fate was sealed! Both were jostling for space in my shelf for perishables and were destined to be partners!
I set about pitting and simmering the cherries, thinking I might make some more brandied cherries but the mind had the draining yogurt in the back of it. Had a few thoughts, which turned into actions pretty soon, and before I knew it we had cherry fro yo being packed off to set in the freezer! Like I said, cherries and yogurt were destined to be together … in the freezer too! The result, after many whisks by the faithful greased elbow, was a delicious frozen yogurt, nudged gently into slight luxury with the addition of some low fat cream.
You might have seen these little cups in my recent post on Props for food photography. I picked up an assortment of these on our recent trip to Gangtok. North Indian hill stations are known for their bone china and ceramic pottery, a large part of which comes across the border from China. Popular items include single serving tea mugs, sauce and soup bowls, and most shops offer the same fare,. I could spend all day in these beautiful shops stacked to the roof with trivia, but the family would revolt! {Hill station is a term used for a town usually at somewhat higher elevations. The term was used in colonial Asia (particularly India, but also in Africa albeit rarely), where towns have been founded by European colonial rulers up where temperatures are cooler, as refuges from the summer heat.}

FRESH CHERRY FROZEN YOGURT
1 1/4 cups hung yogurt {from 1.5ltrs of home set yogurt; drained overnight}
600gms fresh cherries {pitted}
1/2 cup sugar {adjust to taste}
400ml low fat cream {I used 25% Amul cream}
3-4 tbsp cherry brandy liqueur/ kirsch {optional}
1/2 cup powdered sugar {adjust if required}
1 tbsp vodka {optional}
Method:
Pit the cherries and simmer them with the granulated sugar for 5-7 minutes till just soft. Drain the cherries, add the liqueur, and leave them to cool. Reduce the liquid till like a thick syrup. Cool. Reserve a few whole cherries if you wish to add some to the fro yo for texture. Run the remaining cherries and syrup till smooth. {This can be done a day in advance and chilled in the fridge for a day or two.
Roughly chop the whole reserved cherries.
Whip the hung yogurt, cream, powdered sugar, blended cherries & vodka {if using} till mixed uniformly. Fold in the chopped cherries, and transfer the blend to freezer container if you don’t have an ice cream maker. Whisk well every hour, five to six times over, to break down and distribute the crystals. Leave to set for 6-8 hours, better overnight.
Serve with fresh cherries if desired!

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