Friday, June 27, 2014

Coconut rum frozen yogurt cake with walnuts and cherries

Two summers ago, I was at the mall minding my own business when I made a life-changing discovery. Let’s ignore for now that minding my own business at a mall usually involves hours of me collecting all sorts of items through the store, only to spend about 10 seconds deciding I’m leaving it all behind. I know, terrible; but we’ll leave that discussion for another day. I was at the book store, (and whether or not I successfully bought something there isn’t important) and on my way to the car I saw this “ice cream” place I’ve been seeing absolutely packed for years but never ventured in. That day I went in, and I realized it wasn’t ice cream but frozen yogurt, and after a few “trying cups” I was hooked. Over the last couple of years I’ve had so much frozen yogurt (and by so much I actually mean so many times, because I never actually buy more than 6 oz.).  From chains to local, to organic, I’ve tried them all. I love my froyo. I’ve made frozen yogurt at home too, and it has even made its way to this blog as well.

This week I went to a friend’s house for a summer party. She and her fiancé  had an array of great food, but somehow I was especially fixed on their desserts: homemade éclairs and homemade ice cream cake. Éclairs I absolutely love, so no further explanation is needed. I ate more than I should have, I know so. But the ice cream cake really surprised me. I’m not sure why, but I’ve never thought of ice cream cake as “home-doable”. It’s not like I thought it was impossible either. It just that it never really occur to me that you could make it at home. I loved that ice cream cake, and of course, now I want to make one. 

Three days after my epiphany, I decided I had to make an ice cream cake. I had a few issues, though. I am busy, so I wanted something fast and easy to make. I also wanted to keep the oven usage to a bare minimum because it has been really hot and some of us don’t have an AC to chill afterwards. Lastly, I had just overindulged at the party a few days before, so I wanted to keep the calories down. My 10 second decision was to make a “frozen yogurt cake” instead. I used a store bought, ready-to-use Graham crust I’ve had sitting in the pantry for months now. For the filling I used fat-free Greek yogurt, I added some coconut rum for both flavor and to prevent it from freezing into a block, and I added shaved coconut to give it a “cake-ier” texture. Listo. I just mixed the ingredients, poured it over the crust, and froze it overnight. No ice cream machine needed. Just for fun, I made a honey-walnut-cherry topping just before serving. 

The result was a great tasting summer dessert! The frozen yogurt cake was just 255 calories plus an extra 44 calories for the topping. Loved it! Of course, I still have to make a more “traditional” ice cream cake, but the summer has just started, so I have plenty of time to make it. And I have a feeling I’ll be making this frozen yogurt cake a few more times as well.

On the road shortcut

Coconut rum frozen yogurt cake
252 calories, 39 g carbs, 7 g fat, 7 g protein
16 oz. (2 cups) Nonfat Greek yogurt plain
0.5 oz. coconut rum
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sugar
1 ½ tablespoon unsweetened coconut flakes
1 9-inch Ready to fill crumb Graham cracker crust
Using an electric mixer at medium power, mix the Greek Yogurt, coconut rum, and vanilla extract until well incorporated. Add the sugar, and the coconut flakes and keep mixing until they are well incorporated into a fluid mixture. Pour the mixture into the Graham crust, cover it and freeze it overnight.

Walnut and cherry topping
44 calories, 5 g carbs, 3 g fat, 1 g protein

¼ cup walnuts
¼ cup dried cherries
1 teaspoon honey
Pinch salt

On a skillet on medium-high heat, toast the walnuts until browned and fragrant (about 5 minutes). Make sure to stir constantly to prevent them from burning. Remove from heat, and let them cool to the touch. Chop the walnuts and the dried cherries, then transfer them to a mixing bowl. Add the honey, a pinch of salt, and mix together well.

1 comment:

  1. Hey! That's so clever using a little bit of rum to prevent it from going completely solid, I would have never thought of that, this looks brilliant :D x