Last week, I bought myself something I’ve been wanting for a couple of years now, a desire that has popped up the last couple of summers. Something that makes cool, creamy treats at the flip of a switch, without needing loads of ice and rock salt (like the super-old school model in our basement from back in the day). In case you haven’t guessed, I bought myself an ice cream maker?
Why now? Well, in case you missed it, I’ve been wanting one for a couple of years. And, I wanted to celebrate my first end-of-the-school-year as a teacher. And, I still had a bit of tax return money saved, and wanted to spend it on something fun that I would remember. What says fun more than an ice cream maker?!
Now, while I do plan to test out some decadently delicious recipes with this baby. My first two attempts were from my Biggest Loser Dessert Cookbook. I know, I know, what a killjoy – I’ve got this new machine that can make amazing ice cream and I am making HEALTHY desserts first?!?! Seriously though, this stuff was pretty darn good. Better still, only 4 ingredients in the vanilla frozen yogurt and 3 in the chocolate ice cream – doesn’t get any better than that.
From the Biggest Loser Dessert Cookbook
Makes 5 (1/2 cup) servings, 120 calories, 9 g protein, 21 g carbohydrates, 0 g fat, 0 g fibre per serving
2 cups plain fat-free Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons light agave nectar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir well to combine (I just did it in the container I planned to freeze it in to save clean-up). Spoon the mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker that holds at least 2 quarts. Make the ice cream according to the manufacturer’s directions. Serve immediately or freeze for harder ice cream.
*Note: the recipe says that the consistency and flavour are best when fresh, and that the yogurt becomes harder and less creamy over time. The day after, this stuff was HARD AS A ROCK, and needs to be softened, either in the microwave or on the counter, before serving again, and even then, it’s pretty hard and a bit tricky to eat – still delicious though.
Super Simple Chocolate Ice Cream
Makes 5 (1/2 cup) servings, 100 calories, 6 g protein, 20 g carbohydrates, less than 1 g fat, 1 g fibre per serving
1 can (12 oz or 370 mL) fat-free evaporated milk
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons light agave nectar
Pour 1/4 cup of the evaporated milk and the cocoa powder into a medium mixing bowl (or just use container you’ll freeze it in). Using a whisk, mix the ingredients until very well combined and no lumps remain. Slowly whisk in the remaining milk followed by the agave until well-combined and smooth.
Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an ice cream maker that holds at least 2 quarts. Prepare the ice cream according to the manufacturer’s directions.
I also made some chocolate “fudge” sauce from my Biggest Loser book. All you do is whisk together 1/2 cup agave nectar with 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder. The longer this stuff sits, the thicker and fudgier it gets.
Mixing ice cream ingredients: vanilla yogurt on the left, chocolate on the right.
Finished and ready to go into the freezer! Vanilla on the left, chocolate on the right!
So…all this ice cream and sauce. What to do? Have a Biggest Loser-style sundae party, naturally (trust me, it’s better than it sounds, I promise!).
Our “fixins” were the two ice creams, fudge sauce, a fresh batch of stewed rhubarb (which I have started making in the microwave, a bit quicker and easier, FYI), fresh strawberries and fresh raspberries. I had a little bit of everything in my cute bowl purchased at the new Anthropologie (love that store) in the Walden Galleria on last week’s excursion.
Next day (same bowl, slightly different contents): hard vanilla frozen yogurt, raspberries and strawberries, just a touch of light chocolate syrup, a fat-free biscotti purchased in Buffalo and a squirt of fat-free ReddiWhip (if Chef Devin Alexander, author of the BL book was reading this, she’d probably be horrified to see that I topped her beautiful, pure, natural desserts with a processed aerosol product….sorry Chef Devin)!
All in all, good recipes, and great ice cream maker. You just store the bowl part in the freezer (it has some sort of gel or something that freezes inside of it, hence why there’s no need to add ice) and then pop it out when you’re ready to use. I’m just storing mine in the big freezer so I can make ice cream at a moment’s notice.
This is where I ask for your expertise. Anyone with an ice cream maker have any tips or tricks? Any favourite recipes (healthy or not)? Please share!