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Friday, July 25, 2014

It's summer and what's in your freezer?

Dog-days of summer cry out for frozen treats such as slushes, ice-cream, and popsicles.  But are some choices better than others when it comes to cooling off with something frozen?
Here are some things to look for when choosing frozen treats from the store (some examples to look at):
  •  serving size: less than 100 calories per serving is optimal
  • ingredient list: the shorter the better and something other than sugar as the first ingredient

Freeze your own:

       - save out some smoothie, freeze it in a cup and enjoy it later frozen
       - make your own popsicles by blending up in-season fruit and freezing in cups 
       - bypass the blender and enjoy the whole fruit frozen: grapes and berries make great bite sized frozen snacks, put a stick in a spear of pineapple, mango, melon or banana for the most healthful (and simple) frozen treat.
       - great way to use up leftover fruit plate - freeze fruit kebabs and have a multi-flavored popsicle.

We all need more fresh produce to say nothing of staying hydrated in the heat, so freeze that leftover fruit and enjoy the immediate benefits of chilling out as well as the long term benefits of more fiber, water, vitamin C & A in your diet.

My favorite frozen treat is a choco-piña:

  1. Cut up spears of pineapple (or any other fruit).
  2. Insert a popsicle stick and freeze for an hour or so.
  3. Melt a little dark chocolate (1/2 cup covers a whole pineapple-worth of spears) with a tablespoon or so of coconut oil.
  4. Dip the frozen pineapple spear into the chocolate to partially cover the spear, then place on waxed paper and freeze for a couple minutes.  
  5. Remove from freezer, wrap each pop in plastic wrap and store in the freezer for weeks of frozen-treat-enjoyment!