Blackberry Frozen Yogurt (without an ice-cream maker)

It’s finally summer and my favorite time of year- berry season!  Give me all the berries…strawberries, raspberries, cherries and blackberries.  It brings a smile to my face when the little fruit stands on the side of the road that have been shuttered for nine months are now brimming with fresh fruit.  There is SUCH a difference in flavor between store-bought berries and local, freshly-picked berries. No comparison, really.

We recently had family in town from Illinois and it was such a pleasure to share this unique California experience with them.  There we all stood with our cartons of berries, devouring them in the gravel parking space with juice dripping down our chin.  Messy, but the best.  So, with our house constantly full of summer fruit, I decided to find another way to use them instead of eating them straight from the refrigerator.  And since it’s going to be over 100 degrees every day this week (!!), let’s do some homemade froyo!

Even though I don’t own an ice cream attachment for my Kitchen Aid (though I would love one), there is still a way to enjoy frozen treats throughout the summer.  Enter this recipe.  It only calls for a handful of ingredients, most of which may be pantry staples, and is simple in its approach.  Blend berries, greek yogurt, a bit of sweetener and vanilla in a food processor, freeze, blend mixture again with cream (or half & half) and…voilá!  Homemade froyo.  Any berry can be used, but we love blackberries in this house so that’s what we decided upon.  Also, if you use berries with a skin such as cherries or blueberries, you may need to take and extra step and strain the berry-yogurt mixture prior to freezing.  Just a thought.

This simple frozen yogurt can and should be enjoyed with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar (or balsamic glaze).  It’s tangy and perfect.  Trust me.


blackberry frozen yogurt (without an ice-cream maker)

The original recipe calls for full-fat greek yogurt and heavy cream but I used Siggi’s 0% unsweetened yogurt and half & half instead and was still extremely happy with the results.  If using nonfat yogurt, I’d recommend this brand because it’s naturally very thick, otherwise stick with the full-fat yogurt.

  • 1 cup fresh blackberries, washed
  • 2 cups thick Greek yogurt
    • I used Siggi’s 0% unsweetened yogurt
  • 2-4 tbs 100% pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla
  • ¼ cup half and half (or heavy cream)
  • blackberries, for topping
  • Balsamic glaze or balsamic vinegar, for topping (optional but recommended!)

Place washed blackberries, Greek yogurt, maple syrup and vanilla in a food processor.  Blend everything together until completely smooth.  At this point you can strain the mixture if desired, however I enjoy the full blackberry effect.

Pour blended mixture into ice cube trays or a large, rectangular cake pan (which is what I did).  Cover and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight, until solid.

Break apart the mixture in the baking pan with a wooden spatula into smaller chunks.  Place those chunks into the bowl of a food processor and start blending until they break up into sandy bits.  With the food processor still running, pour the half and half as a steady stream.  Gradually, the mixture will loosen and form a creamy ball which is what we’re aiming for.  Stop blending and serve immediately with more fresh blackberries and a drizzle of balsamic glaze.

{If the mixture is too soft, just refreeze for about 20 minutes.  If the frozen yogurt is left in the freezer for too long and becomes hard, simply repeat the food processor and cream process.}

 

 

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