Beat the Heat with Frozen Treats!

June 16, 2020

With the forecast for outside air temperatures creeping toward the 90s, it’s time to break out the ice cream and fro-yo recipes and whip up some frozen desserts! Here are a few cool recipes to tantalize your taste buds and beat the heat!

Ice Cream – Churn or No-Churn

Author and blogger, Tessa Arias wrote an entire cookbook about ice cream and on her blog Handle the Heat, offers three ways to make no-churn ice cream if you don’t have an ice cream maker. One uses just two ingredients plus vanilla extract: heavy cream and sweetened condensed milk – both chilled – and the other two can be used with ANY recipe. Count on five minutes to whip things up, and six hours to freeze.

Tessa’s Freeze and Stir or Plastic Bag methods both require some elbow grease for making ice cream – metaphorically speaking – and you can’t just shove it in the freezer and expect yummy results. Check out her instructions. Then if you think you’d rather let a machine do the mixing, stirring, smashing and shaking – consider an ice cream maker. 

With an appliance, an electric motor does all the heavy lifting. And, according to Wirecutter at the New York Times, the best model tested out of 16 machines is the Whynter ICM-201SB. It’s $325 on Amazon and the runner-up – Breville Smart Scoop – is even more expensive at $500, but there are a couple of budget picks, too, like the Nostalgia ICMP 400Blue for $65. 

Whatever recipe you use, unless you’re a purist, don’t forget the yummy add-ins! Tessa offers a few ideas, from crushed Oreo cookies and s’mores (graham crackers and Hershey bars), to ingredients for Rocky Road, Dulce de Leche, Mint Chip and Cookie Butter.

Frozen Yogurt – Eat as You Go!

For healthy, delicious, frozen yogurt treats, Blogger Lacey at A Sweat Pea Chef, shows you how to make instant frozen peanut butter or chocolate yogurt as well as frozen fruit yogurts – all using frozen banana slices. To the bananas Lacey adds unsweetened, plain, full-fat Greek yogurt and either fresh fruit, cocoa and maple syrup or peanut butter  — using a food processor.

These are easy, delicious soft serve desserts that are ready to eat in minutes. If you like your fro-yo a little firmer in consistency, put it in an airtight container in the freezer and give it an hour or so before you spoon into it. 

Or, as Kelly at Just a Taste suggests, pour the fro-yo into popsicle molds and after freezing dip into melted chocolate or Magic Shell for a little extra sweetness on a stick!

Fruit Sorbet in Rainbow Flavors

If you’re serious about your sorbet – and we know sorbet lovers who eat nothing but that in the summer – then making it yourself requires knowing the smooth and creamy secret. Blogger Zoe went to culinary school and her blog – Zoe Bakes – is a wealth of tips and hints about how-to-make the perfect dessert. She has an expensive chef-geek device that shows the sugar content in a solution and ensures the prefect texture of her sorbet, but she also says you don’t need anything fancy for sorbet success. 

The secret? Float an egg in the sorbet. That’s right – float an egg. And, she says, it’s a great science experiment to do with kids! Here’s why: as the solution gets saturated with sugar, the egg floats to the surface. Once the egg is partially above the surface, the solution has enough sugar to prevent your sorbet from becoming a brick of ice. To make sorbet with fruit juice – follow her recipe using 3 cups of juice, 2 cups of simple syrup and 1 to 2 tablespoons of liqueur – plus one VERY clean egg. 

Thomas Joseph, star of Kitchen Conundrums from Everyday Food, shows you how to make sorbet by blitzing fresh fruit, straining it and adding simple syrup – which is equal portions of boiled sugar and water. By the way, simple syrup keeps forever and you can use it in iced tea, iced or hot coffee, and mixed drinks all summer long. Joseph demonstrates, in a YouTube video, how to achieve the perfect sorbet consistency (same egg secret!) and what happens if you use too much sugar or too much water. 

And because we’re among those who are serious about our sorbet, one tip from Serious Eats for fruit sorbet is to use the absolute best fruit you can find – the sweetest strawberries, the juiciest peaches, or the most fragrant watermelon. That makes all the difference in taste! And the creamiest sorbet comes from fruit high in pectin (berries, stone fruit, grapes) or fiber (mangoes, pears and bananas) because they’re high in viscosity and full of body.

Summer Treats in Southshore

Now that we’re reopening the amenities (June 15) in the master-planned community of Southshore – it feels like things are returning to near-normal. Fingers crossed! Our community has made Life at the Lake easy to enjoy with miles of trails and walking paths – all the way to and around the Aurora Reservoir. If you’re house hunting, check out the brand new homes from Taylor Morrison, Richmond American Homes and Toll Brothers. We offer floor plans for ranch and two-story designs, priced between the $400s and the $700s.