I love summer for all the fresh fruits. I can’t keep myself from buying big bags of cherries and apricots and berries along with the usuals I have on hand – bananas and apples. Problem is I can’t begin to eat them all fast enough before they get too ripe and it just kills me when I end up dumping some of it in the compost bin. I can eat a serious amount of fruit in a day, but even I have my limits.
Something I enjoy year around are smoothies. Usually it’s a combination of yogurt, fruit, liquid (either milk or juice), and maybe a scoop of protein powder just to give it an extra nutritional boost. Throw in a few ice cubes, give it a twirl in the blender and I have a fast breakfast or snack to appease my sweet tooth.
Here’s how I’ve discovered to make these two work together. When all that yummy fruit starts getting away from me, I wash it, peel it, pit it, cut it up in pieces– whatever is appropriate for the produce. Lay it out on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze. It doesn’t have to be completely frozen – just enough so that it’s not sticking to each other. At this point, I put it in a resealable bag and toss it in the freezer and then pat myself on the back for not letting any of this precious fruit go to waste.
Ice cubes in a smoothie add a nice texture but they also ultimately end up watering it down. The frozen fruit eliminates the need for the ice cubes but why not take it one more step? Yogurt can easily be frozen in ice cube trays and then popped out and again stored in resealable bags in the freezer. Never waste yogurt approaching it’s expiration date again. You could easily do this with milk or fruit juice too.
For me it’s a win-win-win. With the frozen fruit and frozen yogurt, it’s very much like a healthier (read: lower calorie) version of ice cream, I’m not wasteful and I am able to extend the fresh tastes of summer just a little longer.