Here at Merrow Savouries we pride ourselves in our ethos of fresh homemade food – not frozen or pre-made the day before. Freshly made and prepared on the day.
But sometimes the freezer does come in handy, especially at this time of year, when hopefully the sun is shining and we all would love an ice-cold dessert. So, here are a few ideas…
Did you know that bananas make the most gorgeous and incredibly healthy ice cream?
Because all you need is bananas!! Simply slice a couple of them up quite thinly. Then place on a baking tin lined with baking parchment. Pop them in the freezer overnight.
Next day, simply blitz them in a food processor for about 3-4 minutes. Be patient, it does take this time for them to go all gooey and not gritty or grainy. That’s it! Honestly. Serve as it is in a dish (or ice cream cone) or you could sprinkle over some toasted almonds or other nuts – still nice and healthy. Or why not add a tablespoon of crunchy peanut butter to the blender for a nutty banana ice cream. mmmmm
Or, if you fancy adding something naughty to the healthy– melt some chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water or use the microwave. Then pour the hot chocolate over the cold ice cream. Does it get any better?
If you really fancy something delicious and don’t mind eating a bowl of countless calories – whip together 600ml tub of thick or double cream with, wait for it, a whole can of condensed milk(!) Add a good splash of vanilla essence. Freeze in a lidded container. Allow to soften a little before serving – et voila – rich thick vanilla ice cream. Or omit the vanilla essence and add peppermint essence and some chopped pieces of chocolate – et voila mint chocolate ice cream. But beware this is a delicious treat, but it is full of fat.
Another cheat’s ice dessert is to simply pour ready-made smoothies into ice cube trays – a 250ml bottle makes 10 cubes. Place a cocktail stick in. Freeze. Allow to defrost just a little – then enjoy. My little granddaughter adores these.
Did you know that if you simply freeze chunks of bananas, whole strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or even grapes then they are delicious eaten straight from the freezer? You could place a little bamboo stick or cocktail stick in them before freezing. Strawberries and blueberries in particular taste just like a posh ice cream and are very moreish and a great healthy summer snack.
We once catered for a canapé reception on a really hot day and simply handed around glass trays of these frozen fruits, which made for delicious, sweet treats. They were devoured. With everyone commenting ‘what a brilliant idea’.
Another trick for the freezer is to make posh ice cubes. Place a slice of lemon or orange into each cube of an ice cube tray and fill with water. Freeze. Looks and tastes great in a G&T or glass of sparkling water (or in my recipe for homemade lemonade which I shared last month). A slice of lime in the tray is great if you are serving elderflower cordial. You could also do this with other fruits in the trays – and place into a jug of Pimms.
So, ok, I admit it – the freezer does have its uses.