Thursday, March 11, 2010

Kitchen Klutz: Klutz makes frozen treats

By Michèle De Meglio

I have a new obsession - Red Mango!

Forget Pinkberry, Red Mango is by far my favorite frozen yogurt chain. And,yes, I eat the cold treat in the dead of winter.

There’s only one problem - it’s expensive!

Tired of shelling out $6 for a yogurt and fruit combo, I tried to make my own frozen yogurt at home.

Going in, I wasn’t too convinced that my version would be as good as Red Mango’s but it was worth a shot! And it would save me some cash!

Classic frozen yogurt requires just a few ingredients - yogurt, of course, sugar and vanilla extract. Many recipes I found called for vanilla extract mixed with Greek yogurt. I’m not a big fan of FAGE’s sour kick so I figured I’d kill two birds with one stone and just use regular vanilla yogurt.

In place of sugar (some recipes called for a full cup!), I opted for a sugar substitute.

Nearly every recipe I read used an ice cream maker. I don’t have one and found it unwise to spend $50 on a machine for one dish - especially when I’m making this dessert to save money.

Searching for a super basic recipe, I found different ideas for how to concoct frozen yogurt.

One advised filling a Ziploc bag with the yogurt mixture and then placing it in a larger bag containing salt and ice. Then you throw the bags around for 10 minutes. Sounds like fun but I had a scary vision of the entire thing breaking and coating my kitchen with ice and frozen goo. So not cute.

Another tip sounded easy and mess free. All you do is fill a deep baking pan with the mixture and put it in the freezer for four hours. Every 30 minutes or so, give it a stir. Sounds good to me!

Verdict: Yummy yogurt in my tummy!

The dreamy treat didn’t taste exactly like Red Mango (it was a bit too sweet) but it was still tasty - and easy to make!

Toss some fresh berries on top for the most delightful dessert.

Easy Vanilla Frozen Yogurt
2 cups vanilla yogurt
2 tbsp sugar substitute

Strain yogurt to remove liquid. Combine with sugar substitute. Fill a plastic or metal baking pan with the mixture and store in freezer for four hours, stirring well every 30 minutes. Serve with fresh fruit.

Kitchen Klutz follows 20-something Michèle De Meglio as she burns casseroles and her fingers, all in hope of trading frozen dinners for home cooking.


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