Classic Peach Milkshake

IMG_3433If you remember a couple weeks ago, I wrote about how I typically consume milkshakes in place of meals.  I realize this may not be the healthiest of choices, but I love milkshakes and I am just too full to enjoy them with meals or after meals most of the time.  I posted a Chocolate Cherry Milkshake that I made one night as Little Miss Mixture and I had gone out to a late lunch and neither of us was that hungry, so we had a fun summer dinner – Milkshakes.

On occasion I am able to make one type of milkshake for everyone in the house, but many times there are a couple varieties or different flavors requested.  This was one of those times.  Little Miss Mixture wanted to try peach.  I find peach milkshakes are really most enjoyable during the summer when the peaches are fresh.  If you have been reading recently you know we went peach picking and have a lot of peaches on hand now.  I have sliced and frozen a large amount of them.  I think frozen peaches are great for making smoothies, but the flavor is not quite the same as a fresh peach in a true classic milkshake.  Peach milkshakes are best in the middle to late summer when the freestone peaches are at their best and make it easiest to work with.

This milkshake is quintessential summer in the south and can be ready in five minutes.  Why not make the most of the summer by enjoying fresh local fruit and ice cream.  If you are like me in anyway a milkshake can just brighten your day.  Try it!

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Classic Peach Milkshake

6 oz. Vanilla Ice Cream

1 1/2 Fresh Peaches, pitted and sliced

1 tsp Vanilla Extract

1/4 c. Milk, optional

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.  If you prefer a thicker milkshake, puree the first 3 ingredients and then add milk to get desired consistency.  If the peaches are really juicy no milk is needed to get a perfect thick peach shake.  Pour into a glass and enjoy.

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Monday Mixture

Good Morning, though it feels as if it should be afternoon already as I have been up for hours.  Typically I wake fairly early but today it was more like the middle of the night.  I was being a good daughter though and drove my parents to the airport for an early morning flight.  They are off on another fun adventure.

I on the other hand have only mentally dreamed of my next adventure, as we seem to go in spurts with our travel and right now it is a low.  My list of places I want to visit and revisit is quite long, but finding the time and the funds is the hard part.  I hope to be able to enjoy traveling later in life as several members of my family have.  There are so many places to see near and far.

I think enjoying travel even further enhanced when you enjoy food.  When you have an adventurous palate, you are able to learn more about the culture of places through all your senses, helping to make memories that are not just in photographs.

This weekend we took time to enjoy our local culture.  I love picking my own fresh fruit.  I think it is a fun family outing and a great experience for everyone.  I cannot be certain, but I think Little Miss Mixture enjoys apples and peaches more since she has learned about the different varieties and picked them herself.

1. What we are Eating ( July 20 – July 26)

Sunday – Summer Tomato Soup & Fancy Grilled Cheese, similar to this

Monday – Zucchini Fattoush

Tuesday – Grilled Peach & Arugula Pizza

Wednesday – Tuna Melts, Chickpea & Parsley Salad, Minted Watermelon & Cantaloupe salad

Thursday –  Pan Seared Salmon with a Bacon and Corn Sauté, Sauteed Mushrooms, and Mixed Greens with Blackberries & Goat Cheese (a variation of this entree salad)

Friday – Date Night @ a local farm to table restaurant

Saturday – Ice Cream

2.  Pick Your Own Fruit – We are lucky enough to live in an area where peach orchards are fairly abundant.  A short 45 minute drive and we were at an orchard that had peaches and blueberries.  We always seem to over do it, when we visit orchards, but I guess there are worse things.   

 

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You can be assured there will be some upcoming post that include peaches and blueberries.  I am thinking of adapting this, and there are some favorites such as this that are sure to show up in our menu.

3. Okra – Remember last week I told you about the okra we had in our barrels.  Well I was able to pick three small okra this week and we each enjoyed a piece atop our salmon on Thursday evening.  I don’t see us getting enough for this, but it is still nice to have a piece or two from our own backyard.

4. Ice Cream for Dinner – YES you read that correctly.  As I have stated many times, I am a dietitian and I know what is healthy and what is not as good for you.  However all food fits and I believe it is okay to splurge and make a good memory.  Check it off the bucket list for Summer 2014.  We had Ice Cream sundaes for dinner and we enjoyed it.  This is not a routine thing and if anyone was still hungry, we had fruit salad.  But it was fun and what better way to celebrate National Ice Cream Month than to put Ice Cream in the spotlight and make it a meal.

5. Let’s Have Mixture has been cooking – I have found it hard to stay focused on menus and trying to recipes recently.  Maybe it is the lack of routine that summer brings, or maybe I have just gotten to caught up in simple meals that I can throw together based on farmer market pick ups.  Whatever the case this past week, I seemed to have gotten back on track.  I got creative and made a new pizza, which I will be posting this week.  I also pulled together a dinner off our Recipe Must Make List.  Look for both of these post soon.  Here are some other things I am thinking about now that we have so many peaches and blueberries.

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce (Two Peas & Their Pod)

Blueberry Muffins (Let’s Have Mixture  6/11/2014)

Blueberry Muffin Smoothie (Iowa Girl Eats)

Peach Sorbet (100 Days of Real Food)

6.  Meatless Monday – Don’t forget to enjoy a fabulous meatless meal today.  Here are some great summer meals that we like: Zucchini Fattoush, Zucchini Walnut Feta Cakes, Red, White & Greens Pasta.

Enjoy the last few days of July and be sure to stay cool by celebrating National Ice Cream Month!

 

No Bake Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Ice Cream

Happy National Ice Cream Month!  I have a weakness for good ice cream.  It is no secret I will happily allow ice cream or a milkshake to replace a meal.  However here it is national ice cream month and not only have I had very little ice cream, but the cool July temperatures have deterred me a little from making it.  Don’t get me wrong I eat ice cream any time of year, but when it comes to making it I seem to only get in the mood when it is a nice sunny day outside.  Recently we have not had many of those.  In fact as I am typing this post, I am not sure our family activity for today will occur as it is a comfortable 60 degrees, but it is raining.  Yes 60 degrees in the middle of July you know what that means.  Mrs. Mixture will not be swimming anytime soon.
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I am not going to allow it to rain on our family fun.  One of our  summer bucket list items was to make homemade ice cream.  Well it seems I have done this twice now with fruity flavors.  I am guessing my chocolate loving family is going to have something to say about the next batch we make.

In the meantime, this ice cream is not your typical cheesecake ice cream.  In fact, I purposefully made the cheesecake flavor very mild in hopes that the family would enjoy it.  Mr. Mixture does not like fruity desserts, nor does he like cheesecake.  I know. What is wrong with the man?  He is a chocolate dessert kind of person though on occasion he can surprise me with his enjoyment of random desserts.  Truth is I also made the cheesecake flavor mild, because 4 oz is what I had in the refrigerator when the idea of the ice cream first came to me.

 

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Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Ice Cream

2 cup Heavy Cream

1 Tsp. Vanilla Extract

4 oz. Cream Cheese

1/2 cup Skim Milk

4 Tbsp. Sugar

1 recipe of Graham Cracker Crust, crumbled

1 recipe of Homemade Cherry Sauce

Directions

Allow the cream cheese to come to room temperature.  Once at room temperature  Beat cream cheese to whipped consistency adding vanilla extract.  Once combined add heavy cream and milk lightly beat so as to combine, but not make whipped cream.  Lastly add sugar and mix in.  Then pour cream cheese mixture into ice cream maker and proceed as per ice cream machine manufacturers directions.

Once the cream is ready add the crumbled graham cracker crust and the cherry sauce.  Allow to mix into ice cream.  For soft serve consistency ice cream, enjoy immediately.  For hard ice cream.  Transfer to freezer ( either in ice cream maker bowl or transfer to a freezer safe container) and allow to freeze for 4 hours.

If you prefer a more distant cheesecake flavor, I recommend using 6 oz. cream cheese.

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Graham Cracker Crust

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs.

1 1/2 Tbsp, melted butter

1 1/2 Tbsp sugar

Combine crumbs and sugar in a bowl.  Pour melted butter over and blend well.  Pack mixture into the bowl / oven safe container depending on preparation method,  and refrigerate for 45 minutes to 1 hour or in oven safe container bake for about 6 minutes at 350 degrees.  If using oven method allow to cool before proceeding.  Once graham cracker crust is ready, crumble and add to ice cream.

This ice cream is not overly sweet either which I like.  Using a fresh cherry made into a sauce rather than the over processed cherry pie filling type cherry flavor allows for a simple refreshing type of cream rather than a super sweet ice cream.  Try it.  See what you think.  To jazz it up a little you could always toss some chocolate chips on top or chocolate sauce when serving it.

Happy National Ice Cream Month!!!!!!

Chocolate Cherry Milkshake

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Well I just went back and read my About Me page.  I must apologize as I failed to mention a favorite food … Milkshakes.  I have a vague memory that I spoke about my love for milkshakes and liquid meals in one of my smoothie post, but if not there it is.  I have always loved milkshakes and before smoothies were a popular breakfast item , I can remember my mom making fruit shakes for my breakfast.  I was and never have been a great breakfast eater.  As an adult, I know how to get food when I need it, but as a child I do not think my parents liked sending me off to school without breakfast.  Thus I can remember fruit shakes, toaster strudels, carnation instant breakfast, and a variety of other items being given to encourage me to eat breakfast.  I probably ate mixture for breakfast as early as middle school and continue to do so at times.  I like cereal.  I just never learned to enjoy it covered in milk and turning soggy as I eat it.  Funny as I think about it.  I love milk and still consume it on a regular basis with meals, but cereal and milk are two foods I do not mix.  However as I am typing it just occurred to me there is one way I would probably enjoy milk and cereal together… in a milkshake.  That is an idea for another day.

Well I love milkshakes, but they are just too filling to accompany a meal.  I actually consume them more in place of a meal.  I used to get them for snacks or as quick bite when I was busy working and sort of missed meal times.  As a kid I remember having milkshakes for lunch on a summer day for occasion, and this is something I have continued to do.  Well it is more of a year round occurrence than a summer thing.  It is just so easy and many times it is the perfect amount of food if we have had a later breakfast or bigger breakfast on the weekends, but need something with substinance to hold us to dinner.  I do have some guidelines with our milkshake meals – they generally always contain a fruit, banana mostly.  Nay sayers go on, but all food has a place and just as I remember it as a memory as a child, so will Little Miss Mixture.  Besides there are worst things that could be consumed than a combination of fruit, milk, and ice cream.

 

The other day Little Miss Mixture and I were invited to have lunch with my mom.  We went to a local restaurant that specializes in sushi and burgers.  Yes it is a strange combination, but it works.  The menu had some unique milkshake, including some adult only ones, but I was there for lunch and did not need that much.  However the idea of a shake seemed to stick with me for the remainder of the day.  Having eaten a somewhat late lunch, not being that hungry, and no pressure to make dinner as Mr. Mixture was out of town.  I decided to eat some of the leftover food we brought home and make milkshakes.  Perfect dinner for a hot night.

As a kid we used to visit Dairy Queen.  In fact I can recall having my first blizzard and it being served upside down to show how thick it was.  I am fairly certain when we got these they replaced our meals as well.  See I am just carry on another family tradition.  I have always liked cherry things.  For years I ordered the Cherries Jubilee flavor at Baskin and Robbins, and one of my favorite blizzards was chocolate covered cherry.  I had never tried to recreate one of these flavors until the other day.  I could be in trouble because the first time was success and why wouldn’t it be.  How can you go wrong with chocolate and cherries.

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Chocolate Cherry Milkshake

20 fresh cherries, pitted

6 oz. Vanilla ice cream

1 tsp. Vanilla extract

1 Tbsp. Chocolate Syrup

Blend until smooth and enjoy.

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I wonder how many more delicious things I can make before cherry season is over.  What is your favorite way to eat cherries?

 

 

Strawberry Ricotta Ice Cream

IMG_3102I hate to see good food go to waste. Now this is not to say that I clean my plate or overeat. I am really referring to partial items sitting in the refrigerator or pantry that get forgotten about. How often do you buy an ingredient for a recipe and actually use the entire container? I seem to always have extra ricotta cheese.
I have only recently discovered ricotta cheese and its versatility. This new found love pulls me to pick up a container just to have since I seem to be able to use it in a lot of last minute dinners – pizza, pasta, etc. However there are two situations that occur. I forget I have it and then I must try and get it used before the expiration date, or I use a partially container and then I need to find another use so as not to waste the cheese.
I have found a great many random things to make none of which I would classify as a recipe. Need an afternoon snack – try mixing ricotta cheese, with some peanut butter and cocoa and dipping apple slices or graham crackers in it. A recent breakfast consist of a heaping tablespoon of Chocolate Peanut Butter – really how can you go wrong mixed with about 3 Tbsp of Ricotta and a handful of dried cherries mixed with chocolate peanut butter.  Almost indulgent and yet it so satisfying and healthy.
Prior to traveling I always clean out the refrigerator whether it is a weekend away or several weeks away. I hate coming home to find surprises lurking in containers. In doing so recently I needed to use up just under 1/2 a container of ricotta. The catch I was not hungry and we had other food that was going to be consumed for dinner before we headed out the next morning.
Having recently made some ice cream and realizing I had a small amount of cream and milk leftover from that, I decided ice cream would be the perfect way to use the cheese and save it for consumption at a later date. This is the first time I have created an ice cream completely on my own and I was pleasantly surprised it came out great.  In fact it was much creamier than the s’mores ice cream which was a more traditional homemade ice cream flavor.

Strawberry Ricotta Ice Cream
1 1/2 Quarts

3/4 cup Ricotta Cheese (this is approximate as I used what was left in the container.)

1/3 cup Heavy Cream

1 Cup 1% Milk (you could use milk of choice, but this was sitting in our refrigerator)

3/4 cup chopped Fresh strawberries

1/3 cup sugar

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Puree the mixture.  Pour into ice cream maker and make according to instructions.  It took about 20 minutes for my batch to become a nice soft serve consistency.

Printable Recipe and Nutrition Info found here.

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Little Miss Mixture is generally open minded with things, but she was very hesitant to try the ice cream after finding out I made it with Ricotta cheese.  After she took a small bite, I think her hesitation was gone as she immediately requested more.  It past her test.  Now I am thinking peach season is upon us and you could easily substitute peaches for an excellent summer ice cream.