Stay cool in the kitchen
Matthew Kadey, MSc, RD
When the temperature soars, nothing quenches us quicker than a cool summer treat. Try making your own ice pops, a fruit sorbet or smoothie, or coffee granita.
Nothing signals the lazy, hazy dog days of summer more than ice pops, sorbet, ice cream, and other chilly delights. After all, who craves a bowl of hot soup or fiery chili when the mercury is soaring, or wants to turn the kitchen into a sauna while baking a batch of muffins?
Too many trips to the ice cream parlour can be a detriment to your waistline, as the fat and sugar calories begin to add up. Instead, consider making your own health-boosting cold treats. With the right ingredients (read: local summer fruits and veggies), DIY gazpachos, ice pops, and snowy granitas can easily become nutritional heavyweights. Best of all, they don’t require sweating over a hot stove for hours.
Start with these blissfully nippy recipes that are sure to help you keep your cool—so delicious you’ll forget they don’t include a surfeit of white sugar, fatty cream, or other nefarious ingredients. Welcome to summer’s cold snap.
Here’s how to keep your summer desserts packed with nutritional goodness.
Focus on fruit
With summer fruit at its peak sweetness, why imbue homemade ice creams, frozen yogourts, and ice pops with copious amounts of sugar? Local berries, peaches, and plums will add plenty of natural sweetness and are jam-packed with vitamins and antioxidants, qualifying them as health superstars. White sugar? Not so much.
Sweeter than the rest
When you do want to add a sweetener, be sure to gravitate towards more natural options such as maple syrup, coconut palm sugar, and raw local honey.
Slash the fat
Subzero desserts are often loaded with fat, thanks in part to creams and whole milk. A wonderful way to bid adieu to excess fat calories but keep the creamy goodness is to incorporate reduced fat Greek yogourt into recipes such as smoothies and ice pops. As a perk, it has protein in spades, making your treats more filling. Fat-rich avocado and nuts should not be feared as they predominantly contain heart-healthy unsaturated fat and a smorgasbord of vital nutrients.
Spice is nice
A whisper of spices such as cinnamon and cardamom can add a wallop of calorie-free flavour. Citrus zest provides brightness, while pure extracts such as vanilla or almond add mystery.