Easy Fro-Yo: Ice-Cream Maker Optional
Frozen yogurt doesn't need a plethora of laboratory-borne, multisyllabic ingredients for awesomeness – yogurt, cream and sugar work just fine. But most store-bought varieties typically contain additives like sodium citrate, carrageenan and disodium phosphate for emulsification, stabilization and preservation. These additives have FDA approval, so they won't harm you – but you can do better. How about a customized frozen yogurt that you can adapt to the most esoteric of tastes: avocado and cranberries for mom and dad? Easy. A kid-friendly combination of cookie crumbles and chocolate swirls? No problem, and it only takes about two hours to make.
Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes | Prep Time: 10 minutes | Serves: 4 to 6
- 3 cups plain whole-milk yogurt or plain Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cup sugar, agave, honey or preferred sweetener
- 1/2 teaspoon extract, such as lemon or vanilla (optional)
- 2 to 3 pounds fruit, peeled and seeded (optional)
- Garnishes, such as cookie crumbles or dried fruit, to taste (optional)
- Puree the yogurt, heavy cream, sugar and fruit, if using, in a blender until smooth. Transfer the yogurt mixture to a shallow, freezer-safe container or bowl. If you're not using fruit, add a little extract for a primary flavor.
- Place the yogurt in the freezer, uncovered. If you have a packed freezer, rearrange it to allow at least 1 inch of space above and around the container.
- After 45 minutes, stir the yogurt using a spatula. Break up any clumps. Use an immersion blender or hand mixer for best results. At this point, stir in the secondary ingredients, such as dried fruits or nuts.
- Return the yogurt to the freezer. Blend or stir the yogurt every 30 minutes until frozen, around 2 hours.
- If you're using an ice cream maker, freeze the bowl for 24 hours prior to using it. Churn the yogurt after mixing the ingredients and freeze it for 2 hours or more, depending on your freezer.
- Add 1 tablespoon of corn syrup to help prevent ice crystals from forming.
- You can substitute milk for cream (or even omit it), but you'll sacrifice a little smoothness.
- If you would like to add swirls to the yogurt, lightly stir in your syrup of choice, such as chocolate, caramel or strawberry, about 45 minutes after you start to freeze it.
- If your yogurt turns out a little softer than you prefer, you might have to lower your freezer temperature or freeze it longer.
A.J. Andrews' work has appeared in Food and Wine, Fricote and "BBC Good Food." He lives in Europe where he bakes with wild yeast, milks goats for cheese and prepares for the Court of Master Sommeliers level II exam. Andrews received formal training at Le Cordon Bleu.