Friday, November 30, 2012

A Weekend Trip and A Hannah-Friendly Treat!

1:30. 2:00. 2:42. 6:00.

This is my time schedule. 

For what?

For the day my month long count down ends. 

1:30 - The Boy arrives.

2:00 - We leave for the train station.

2:42 - Our train departs (hopefully on time).

6:00 - We arrive in NYC, awaited by my Aunt. 

We made plans to visit my Aunt and Uncle in New Jersey around the end of October. November 1st hit and the count down began.  

Well, if I'm going to be honest with myself (which seems to be the consensus of appropriate behavior) I should admit that the count down probably started when I thought of the idea. Say...Mid…September?
Early October?

Yea, that sounds about right.

Either way, I'm excited. 

I don't get to see this part of my family often. When we do get together, my aunt and I tend to spend our time getting lost during some adventure, shopping around, sight seeing, and usually double taking the sights because some how we managed to go in a giant circle without realizing it. Part of this may be due to our lack of knowledge concerning her (at the time) new GPS.

I haven’t seen my Aunt and Uncle since a couple of summers ago, and they will be meeting The Boy for the first time. They've never met a boyfriend of mine, but because this one seems to be sticking around for a while, I thought it might be nice. Another reason for me counting the days like a child does for Christmas or their birthday is because not only are we going to New Jersey, but also if weather allows, we'll be spending Saturday in New York City. Who knows what foods I'll find to munch on? 

My blog is all about adventures with food, and in America, what's one of the best places to do that? NYC.

How much food I’ll find to munch on, however, is a concern of mine. So soon after Thanksgiving, portion control is just regaining its strength. After not seeing a good and helpful friend for a few weeks, you tend to be a bit reserved at the chance of them leaving again.

Nevertheless, I’m keeping my thoughts positive and looking forward to the tasty treats. As well as working to keep up my will power.

So with my up coming travels, I figure I'll send off with one of my own (personal favorite) recipes.

Out of all the things I can’t eat, not being able to have dairy, is pretty rough for me.

Not because I’m a cheese fanatic or a glass-of-milk-a-day kind of person, I just really, really, really, love ice cream.

Yes, really.

Like eating a big bowl of chocolate ice cream a night for basically an entire year.

It’s not too hard to find alternative ice cream products. These days there’s coconut milk ice cream, soy ice cream, almond milk ice cream, and they’re all getting better at mimicking the creaminess and alluring texture of dairy ice cream.

Although I due indulge every now and then with those products (even real ice cream once in a while), I’m always careful of the type of food I put in to my body. I wanted a healthier option that would still sooth that ache in my taste buds.



However, go take a drive to your local food store then read through a couple labels of the various sorbets. No, they don’t contain dairy. No, they’re not as bad. Yet, there are still a lot of unnecessary ingredients. Especially for a person like me, needing to extensively watch her sugar consumption. When companies make foods like sorbet (which is mainly fruit - a natural sugar) and then add even more refined sugar on top of that, those grams add up fast.

Take for instance Haagen-Dazs Mango Sorbet. At 150 calories per 1/2 cup, the ingredients include: water, sugar, mango puree, lemon juice concentrate, pumpkin juice concentrate (for color), carrot juice concentrate (for color), natural flavor, pectin (copied from Each item in here isn’t so bad; none of it is particularly harmful. My point is… Why do we need all of it?

Granted, give Haagen-Dazs some credit. This list isn’t nearly as bad as it could be. Most of those are probably for color (as it says) and to help maintain it through shipping and all of that. But still… There are much simpler ways to do things at home.

So I did some research for what most people put into HOMEMADE sorbet. Turns out, if you want one specific fruit flavor there’s usually only that one fruit included. Homemade sorbet contains as little as your choice of fruit, some type of other sweetener (if desired), and…that’s about it. Throw it in the food processor and you’re all set.

But just fruit? That’s not much to enjoy…and just purreed fruit wouldn’t be too good for my blood sugar either.

So what could I possibly add?

Hah, of course! Peanut butter.

And along came one of my most personally adored dishes. It also happens to be a dish that supplies one of the highest numbers of comments and concerns for my mental stability. (I still haven’t figured out why though, it seems pretty normal to me?) I promise you though, if you like mangoes and if you like peanut butter, you will have a hard time picking between ice cream and this luscious sorbet.

The tang of the mango and the taste of peanuts complement each other well. They mix together forming a thickness like that of right-out-of-the-freezer-slow churned ice cream. Process it thoroughly, let it re-freeze for a sufficient amount of time, and you’ve got yourself a light dessert that feels anything but.

Mango and Peanut Butter Sorbet.

1 cup frozen mango
2 1/2 Small Spoonfuls of peanut butter (for a yummy twist, use The Bee’s Knees Peanut Butter by Peanut Butter & Co.)
1/2-1 cup of your favorite cereal (I use either a type of cheerio or PB flavored cereal)

1) Pour mangos into food processor and process till smooth. You will have to continue to push the mango down off the sides. Warning! The processor will be making a lot of noise to blend the mangoes!

2) Add peanut butter and process again till almost all of it’s blended together (feel free to add more or less peanut butter depending on your taste).

3) Place into a bowl and re-freeze until the sorbet has hardened.

4) Crush cereal and then use as a topping right before serving.

Okay, so I know you can't really see the actual sorbet due to the cereal. But I wanted to point out that the spoon, (which is stuck in the mango) is not touching the bowl. Yup. That handle ain't moving. Ahh, the strength of a thick sorbet!

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