I grew up eating berry mousse on a regular (summer) basis. For those of you not familiar with the concept, it’s berries mixed with an equal amount of sugar and some egg white. It tastes absolutely delicious, but just imagine how much sugar goes into that 1 to 1 proportion! It’s insane. This recipe is nothing like that. Because there’s zero sugar. No dairy, no eggs, no gluten etc. And not only does it taste just as good, but it’s also ICE CREAM. And being ice cream is one of the best things one can be.
I’ve tried making banana-based ice cream before, and it’s a treat. Mix in some cacao powder and you’ve got chocolate ice cream. Throw in walnuts and – you got it! – walnut ice cream. But this raspberry version is my absolute favorite. Bananas are naturally sweet, so there’s no need to add anything else. Raspberries are just a little sour, which makes the combination easy on the taste buds. Oops, I just gave away all of the ingredients…
- 1 ripe banana
- 2 handfuls raspberry
- Cut the banana in slices. Wash the raspberries and remove greens. Freeze fruit for 3-4 hours.
- Add the frozen banana in a food processor and mix until it becomes creamy, scraping off the walls as necessary.
- Add the raspberries and continue mixing until the fruits blend together perfectly and have a soft serve consistency.
- Serve immediately.
- This recipe makes 2 small portions. Use the same proportions to make more ice cream at once, depending on the size of your food processor.
One month left until Christmas! That makes it the perfect moment to start baking your advent calendar. Wait, what? Baking it? Yes. Get the butter and sugar working on the sweetest countdown to Christmas. I think it makes sense, it looks simple and pretty, and it’s a real treat. Here is what you need to make your own:
You will need:
- biscuit recipe (see below)
- numbers cookie cutters
- thread and needle
- tree branch
Number shaped biscuits recipe
- 80 g unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp vanilla essence
- 1 1/2 cup flour
Begin by mixing the butter and sugar together. If you don’t have a mixer, you can do it by hand. When you get a creamy composition, add the egg and vanilla and continue to mix. Slowly add in the flour, mixing continuously. Add a pinch of salt and refrigerate the dough for a few minutes.
Preheat the oven at 180°C. Roll the dough to about 5 mm thick and cut out the number shapes. For the advent calendar, you need the numbers from 1 to 24. Pierce each number with a toothpick at the top for hanging. Bake for about 10 minutes or until slightly golden. They’re done faster than you might think!
Start by making the number-shaped biscuits. You can use whatever recipe you like, as long as it doesn’t involve the dough growing (that would ruin the letter shapes). Don’t make the dough too thin. Cut out the numbers from 1 to 24. Pierce each number with a toothpick at the top, so you can hang them later.
When the biscuits are done and cooled off, use a needle to thread each one. For the double digits, use a single thread for both numbers.
Find a pretty tree branch and hang it to the wall with string. Tie each number to the branch, in the proper order. Adorn with lights or fir branches and you’re done!
Straws c/o Glass Dharma
Banana milk is the easiest meal/snack/dessert you can make. My sister introduced it to me a few years back, and I’ve been making it on every occasion since. At some point along the way, I made another discovery: strawberry milk. Tasty, and so pretty! So why not mix everything together and see what comes out? The result: delicious strawberry banana milk, a recipe wilth all the ingredients stated in the name. Have it for breakfast, have it for dinner, pour it over your cereal, sip it ungarnished – there’s no wrong way.
But it can’t be a legit drink without a straw, right? I always feel very wasteful throwing them out when I’m done. And I’m done in a couple of minutes. I mean, you could reuse plastic straws once or twice, but they get icky so quickly. I was very excited to find out that there’s an alternative: beautiful, reusable straws from Glass Dharma! In case you’re not convinced of the need for such straws, just read some of the scary information here, and you might change your mind.
And how good do they look? The graceful bended design is timeless and versatile, it really adds to the overall look of the drink. If you’re worried about cleaning glass straws, don’t be: you can get a cleaning brush that fits perfectly and does all of the work for you. And they’re guaranteed to last a lifetime. Now that summer is here, these bad boys are getting a lot of use around the house and I’m so happy with them.
- 1 ripe banana
- 1 1/2 cup cold milk (can be non-dairy)
- 1 cup ripe strawberries
- Wash the strawberries and remove the greens.
- In a bowl, break the banana in small pieces. Add the milk and strawberries on top. Blend for 2-3 minutes or until homogeneous.
- Garnish with strawberries optionally.
- You can take these measurements loosely. Feel free to add more milk or fruit to taste.
- Add some strawberry ice cream to the blender to make the drink more like a milkshake.
Audrey is the girl behind Maine Forager’s Field Guide (check out the blog here) and she was sweet enough to help with a blog post while I’m away. It’s actually a rhubarb liqueur recipe that I find super intriguing! By the time I come back from Tokyo, rhubarb should be in season, so I’m excited to give it a try! Meanwhile, scroll down and see what the fuss is about:
We live on a small little bit of land in the suburban sprawl of the little city of Portland, Maine, USA. Our winters are long, so when the snow starts thawing and the crocuses are peeking their little heads out of the muddy ground we all rush to our seed stashes and begin our fantasies of all the fresh, local fruits and veggies we can make before the leaves start turning brown again.
We moved here two years ago, and my favorite favorite bit of this place is this one massive hulk of a rhubarb plant my husband’s grandmother tended years before we even got here. This beast has been living in the backyard for longer than most of our neighbors and produces the thickest, reddest chutes you’ve ever seen. Nothing is about as cheery (and easy to care for) as a big triumphant rhubarb in the middle of May.
The landscape is bleak right now, grass slowly turning from white to green and I would be remiss to show you anything so sad this time of year except for my trusty, muddy bison leather LL Bean boots I use for garden shoes. But the transition will be quick, and when it is I will be at the ready with an arsenal of mason jars and local vodka (Cold River Vodka) to whip up a large batch of rhubarb liqueur.
It is so simple. I just love a recipe that gives you the bones and lets you do what you want with it. Lemon zest? Sure, why not, throw some in. Black pepper? Yes, try one of the jars with that! The only tricky part is the waiting, but truth be told if you pop open a jar at any point during the steeping period you will still have a delicious drink. So here are the bones, as far as I’ve worked them out, and you can do what you want with the rest.
- Fresh rhubarb, cut in 1" pieces
- 500ml vodka of your choice
- 2 cups (or 475g) powdered sugar
- Combine all ingredients in a large mason jar or bottle. Make sure the vodka/sugar mixture covers all the rhubarb while still leaving a little space for air at the top.
- Close tightly and set on the counter in an area that doesn't get too hot or too cold.
- Give the jar a good shake and a flip once a day, every day, for four weeks. At the end you have a beautiful sipping liqueur served straight or on ice, or a fantastic option to mix with prosecco!
- Some other things you may add, and be delighted with: strawberries, lemon zest, orange zest, ginger, tea leaves, blueberry, cranberry.