Well, the weather may be getting colder, but in my opinion, it’s still warm enough to eat ice cream! I love making ice blocks and always have some ready to go in the freezer. Whether you know them as popsicles, ice lollies or freeze pops, the winning combination of a frozen sweet treat on a handy stick for eating on the go brings out the big kid in all of us.
My recipe for Banana Berry Ice Creams uses the ‘Nice-Cream’ technique to create a creamy and delicious dessert. This works by using frozen banana as a base which gives a beautifully creamy texture. Bulked out with some thick Greek yoghurt and topped with tangy berries, these ice creams are more nice than naughty.
These are a great treat for kids as you can control the amount of sugar that goes in. They are packed full of healthy fruit and are without all the odd emulsifiers and stabilisers you fid in commercial desserts. You can also mix up the flavours to suit yourself and what needs to be used up in the fridge. I like berry or mango, but peach or kiwifruit are both tasty. It’s important to use ripe fruit for maximum flavour, so it’s a great way to clear out anything that has seen better days in the bottom of the fruit bowl.
Hopefully, it’s still warm enough where you are to enjoy a few last frozen treats in the sun. Take care out there and happy cooking. xJ
Let me know if you try this recipe in the comments below, or using the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram. Happy cooking!
- 100g mixed berries
- 4 Tbsp icing sugar
- squeeze of fresh lime
- 1 large banana
- 200g Greek style yoghurt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Heat the berries gently in a small saucepan, crushing to release the juices. Stir in two tablespoons of the icing sugar and the lime, then remove from the heat. Using a fork mash the berries until smooth. Divide the berry mixture between six ice block moulds, then put into the freezer while you prepare the rest.
- Peel and chop the banana, then put it in the bowl of a food processor along with the remaining sugar, yoghurt and vanilla extract. Puree on high until smooth, then divide evenly between the ice block moulds. There may be a little left over depending on the size of your moulds. I consider this a chef’s treat and drink it as a smoothie.
- Cover the moulds with a double layer of tin foil, make six small slits to allow the sticks to be poked through (this holds them in place), push six wooden ice block sticks about two thirds of the way into the forms, then freeze for at 3-4 hours.
- To release from the moulds, run very briefly under hot water. Let the ice blocks warm up slightly before eating. If you are making a few batches, these can be stored in the freezer in a plastic container separated by sheets of baking paper.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 ice cream
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 75Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 2mgSodium: 24mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 2gSugar: 12gProtein: 2g
Nutrition information ic calculated automatically and isn’t always accurate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why is it called ‘Nice-Cream?’
Why ‘Nice Cream’? I’m not sure who discovered that frozen banana makes a fabulous chilled treat, but it is the secret ingredient in this recipe which not only gives it a terrific texture, it helps to make these ice block nearly guilt-free. I like to throw in some yoghurt or crème fraîche too – but you can use a dairy substitute if you like. Coconut cream works very well, or leave it out altogether and replace with an extra banana or two.
I don’t have any popsicle sticks! What can I use as an alternative?
Not to worry! Channel your inner MacGyver and use cut-up chopsticks, doubled up wooden kebab sticks or similar.
How long can I keep Banana Berry Ice Creams in the freezer?
They’ll be fine for a few weeks. Any longer and they may get a little freezer burn.
Help! My ice creams are stuck in the moulds! How do I get them out?
Either let them sit a few more minutes on the kitchen benchtop, or if you are in a real hurry, run the mould very briefly under warm (not hot!) water and try again.