Posts Tagged ‘ frozen ’

Frozen Margaritas – easy mode (★★★★★)

Look, I know, this recipe is embarrassing.  I’ve been making frozen lime and mango margaritas for years.  I’d love to pretend that mine are sooo much better because I make them with fresh ingredients and love, but that’s just not true.

I made these because I wanted to have an easy way to have frozen drinks on minimal notice this summer.  And they disappeared.  I ran out of mix and had to get more.  Then I made them for a friend with a Vitamix, and she didn’t believe the recipe was as simple as I confessed when asked.  Then I made them again, and was told by yet a third group of people that they were the best frozen margaritas they’d ever had, and I had to scratch my head, because the recipe is as simple as this:  Ice, mix, tequila.

I’d love to say that the secret is the organic blanco tequila, or that I picked the Master of Mixes margarita mix after trying every option available, or even that I’m super careful about the mix of the three ingredients.  Nope.  This one really is one of those recipes that just works because the Vitamix turns ice cubes, mix and liquor into magical frozen beverages better than anything else can:

Frozen Margaritas – easy mode (★★★★★)
I love any halfway decent frozen margarita, but this has been too popular with too many people not to share

Master of Mixes Margarita Mixer
Ice
Tequila (I use 3 Amigos Organic Blanco)

Just eyeball it.  Really.  I throw in the ice cubes for the quantity I want, add the tequila I want, then add mixer until almost at ice level.  I keep the tequila in the freezer to reduce the amount of ice I need to use. Mix on high and enjoy.

Garnish with a lime wedge and/or salted rim if you like.  You can see how much effort I put into these, I threw the ingredients together and then threw it into some IKEA kids cups.  It was still a huge hit.

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Shaved Hawaiian Watermelon Ice (★★★★★) using the Vitamix 7500

My wife and I are huge fans of high quality hawaiian shaved ice, or as they’re known in Japan, かき氷 (kakigori).  Much like my blender experience in Japan, good shaved ice was the norm, and easy to find at summer festivals throughout the warm months of the year.

Moving to the states, snow cones, Kona Ice and similar frozen treats weren’t quite scratching the itch, and shaved ice treats are not cheap here.  This summer we found a great deal and pulled the trigger on our own shaved ice machine so we could create our own syrups/toppings and enjoy shaved ice whenever we wanted.

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So why is this relevant for a Vitamix post?  Here’s why:  Prior to the Fourth of July, we were picking up a lot of food and drinks for a neighborhood party.  We picked up two “seedless” watermelons, and cut the first one open as soon as we got home.  It was right on the border of being overly ripe, and the party was still two days away.  I decided to blend the majority of the watermelon, and freeze the resulting juice in two 32oz tubs:

I used a strainer after blending, but no surprise, there was nothing to be caught in the strainer.

I shaved the one of the two watermelon blocks on July 4th, and I can only describe it as being like frozen cotton candy.  It was incredible!  It also made an incredible mess, which I cleaned up before realizing what a hit the shaved watermelon was, so I held off on making the second block until my wife’s family was visiting later that summer.

Again, even after multiple weeks in the fridge, the shaved watermelon is likely the best way to enjoy watermelon I have ever found.  Yes, the Vitamix cleanup is easy, but the shaved ice machine is not.

 

Shaved Hawaiian Watermelon Ice (★★★★★)
Seedless Watermelon

Cut out the watermelon, avoiding the rind, and put it in the Vitamix.  Blend on high until no pulp is left.  Pour into plastic containers and freeze.  Shave watermelon ice block as finely as possible.

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This is probably the best thing I have made with my Vitamix or shaved ice machine that I will not regularly make, just because of the concerns I have around clean up, but if you have access to a shaved ice machine and interested, I do highly recommend this, as it really is a special treat!

Fruity Coladas (★★★★☆)

A friend was over this weekend and we made some frozen alcoholic beverages.  A random batch was so good that he asked if it was made from a recipe.  It wasn’t, but it was good enough that I figured I would share the recipe here:

Fruity Coladas (★★★★☆)
There was no clear favorite between this and the frozen lime margarita, but even if you aren’t a huge mango fan, this is a great variation on a traditional frozen margarita

1 pound bag of frozen mango
3/4 pound of frozen strawberries
15 oz. can of cream of coconut
one medium/large limes
2/3 cup white rum
water and ice

I mixed everything but the lime, but the drink lacked the tartness that good margaritas and pina coladas have, so I added a lime to help add that citrus tartness.  For the lime, remove the skin with a knife, keeping as much of the fruit intact as possible.  Throw the fruit in the blender and squeeze any remaining juice left on the lime skin slices.  The exact blend of ice and water is up to personal preference, as is the amount of alcohol to add.

 

Now, it’s not the most amazing frozen drink I’ve had in recent history.  That would either be the frozen lime or mango margaritas that we made not too long ago.  But for a drink that was created based on what we had in the freezer and pantry to work with, I think it turned out pretty great.  Then again, it’s kind of tough to make a bad frozen fruit drink in a Vitamix.

Fresh Peaches and Pineapple Sorbet (★★★★☆)

As I mentioned at the end of a recent post, I decided to try frozen peaches with canned pineapple.  The idea was to recreate/tweak the awesome flavor of Fresh Peaches Sorbet without needing any honey or sugar, and pineapple seemed like a great complement.

It is absolutely fantastic, and the only reason I’m not giving it five stars is because my parents felt that the pineapple flavor almost overpowered the peach flavor, and that they enjoyed the Fresh Peaches Sorbet because the peaches were the star.

Fresh Peaches and Pineapple Sorbet (★★★★☆)
Fantastic frozen dessert when peaches are in season so you can pick up naturally very sweet peaches at a reasonable price.  Well suited for utility peaches.  Serves approximately 4-8 people, depending on serving size.

10-12 frozen peaches (cut and pits removed)
1 can of pineapple chunks
Ice

Freeze the peaches in advance.  Then put the peaches and pineapple in the blender.  Blend on medium to high, using the tamper and adjusting the blender intensity to ensure everything is well mixed.  Add ice and/or water to dilute the mix to the desired strength and consistency.  Add honey or sugar for additional sweetness.  Serve immediately.

Again, the magic ingredient is the ripe, local, seasonal peaches, which are so good they don’t need much help.  I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be the same with lower quality peaches.

My parents tell me they were able to make a phenomenal sorbet using fresh peaches and red grapes in the 5200 I gave them.   I still have enough frozen peaches remaining for a small batch, so maybe I’ll pick up some red grapes and try that.  (Update:  Used the last of my peaches with red grapes.  Also very good, but I think I personally preferred the pineapple.)

Fresh Peach Banana Strawberry Frozen Yogurt Smoothie (★★★☆☆)

Maybe I’m being a bit too harsh in rating this, as it was really tasty and everyone devoured it.  That said, it was in that awkward middle zone between being a sorbet, frozen yogurt and a smoothie.  We just threw a lot of frozen peaches, a banana, some strawberries, the rest of the plain yogurt we had and some ice and water into the blender.  As you’d expect, it definitely tasted good, but had too much water and ice to be a good frozen yogurt, too much yogurt to be a sorbet, and not enough water and ice to be a smoothie.

Fresh fruit pretty much always tastes good when blended into a frozen treat, but having a structured goal or better recipe would have bumped this up a star or two.

Fresh Peach Banana Strawberry Frozen Yogurt Smoothie (★★★☆☆)
As you can tell from the name, this tasty frozen treat didn’t know what frozen treat it wanted to be.

4 frozen peaches (cut and pits removed)
1 banana
6 strawberries
plain yogurt
Ice/water

Freeze the peaches in advance.  Then put the peaches, banana, strawberries and yogurt in the blender.  Blend on medium to high, using the tamper and adjusting the blender intensity to ensure everything is well mixed.  At this point you have tasty frozen yogurt.  Frozen yogurt diluted with additional ice, water and/or yogurt as desired to create a smoothie or milder frozen yogurt.  Serve immediately.

sorbetsmoothie

Ripe, local, seasonal fruit is so good it doesn’t need much help, so no amount of random mixing on my part was able to make this not taste good, but trying to make a sorbet, similar to the peach sorbet I made, or a frozen yogurt or a smoothie would have been better than just randomly throwing things in the blender and ending up somewhere between the three.

I do plan on trying to make a pineapple and peach sorbet, as we picked up a lot of fresh, locally grown peaches recently, and I think the pineapple and peach might go well together in a sorbet.

Fresh Blackberry Sorbet (★★☆☆☆)

Our backyard has a fence that’s lined with blackberry and raspberry bushes on the other side of it.  The blackberries are at their peak and we we’re bringing in about a pound a day this week.

Based on how good the Fresh Peaches Sorbet was, we decided to try to recreate that magic with fresh blackberries.  Unfortunately, the blackberries are smaller than what you’d see at the grocery store, and have a substantial number of seeds per berry.  Despite blending them for a reasonable length of time, the gritty, sand-like seeds in the sorbet meant the excellent flavor was ruined by the unfortunate texture.

Fresh Blackberry Sorbet (★★☆☆☆)
Might work better with large, juicy farm berries, but still not something I’d recommend based on the gritty texture added by the berry seeds.

1 lbs. of blackberries (half frozen, half refrigerated)
Raw honey (approximately 3-4 tablespoons)
Ice

Freeze half the blackberries in advance.  Then put the blackberries and two cups of ice in the blender.  Blend on medium to high, using the tamper and adjusting the blender intensity to ensure everything is well mixed.  Add approximately three tablespoons of honey and taste.  Sorbet can be sweetened with additional honey or diluted with additional ice.  Serve immediately.

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It looked good and had nice flavor, but it’s not something I’ll be making again.   Neither this nor the berry juice I made last year seem to be great uses of the berries.  Maybe I’ll come up with a great recipe involving the berries and Vitamix next summer.

Fresh Peaches Sorbet (★★★★★)

We visited a local farmers market in Troy and picked up 4 quarts of delicious utility peaches (essentially a box full of peaches with split pits) for $10.  My old 5200’s Whole Food Recipes Vitamix cookbook had a Peach Sorbet recipe, but it called for ¾ cup of sugar and only 3 peaches, which is roughly 600 calories of sugar, and seemed like a crazy ratio of peaches to sugar.  It also called for 4 cups of ice, which seemed excessive.

We’d also bought some local raw honey, and I figured the peaches were sweet enough that I wouldn’t need to use much to sweeten the peaches, so I cut up a lot of peaches, roughly a dozen, and froze half of it.  I threw this recipe together on a lark, assuming I could add more honey and ice after blending the peaches, but it went over so well with all six people I served it to that it didn’t need tweaking and I thought it’d be worth sharing.

Fresh Peaches Sorbet (★★★★★)
Fantastic frozen dessert when peaches are in season so you can pick up naturally very sweet peaches at a reasonable price.  Well suited for utility peaches.  Serves approximately 4-8 people, depending on serving size.

12 peaches (cut and pits removed)
Raw honey (approximately 3-4 tablespoons)
Ice

Freeze half the peaches in advance.  Then put the peaches and two cups of ice in the blender.  Blend on medium to high, using the tamper and adjusting the blender intensity to ensure everything is well mixed.  Add approximately three tablespoons of honey and taste.  Sorbet can be sweetened with additional honey or diluted with additional ice.  Serve immediately.

That’s it, the only magic is that ripe, local, seasonal fruit is so good it doesn’t need much help.  The reactions I got were so good that I can’t give this anything less than five stars, but I know it wouldn’t be the same with lower quality peaches.

(Update: Both pineapple and grapes can be used instead of honey)

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