I did a bunch of crazy things last weekend that included attending a "Winter Tops and Summer Shorts" theme party. That's right sweaters and shorts during the season of the polar vortex, it was an absolutely insane idea by my friend Alex but also one of the funnest parties, I've been to in a while.
I figured if that can happen, frozen sweet foods can happen too and should. So here I am with a delicious rich and creamy chocolate yogurt recipe that has chili in it to keep you warm. I used a dried ancho chili powder which is basically a dried up poblano pepper. The dash of chili adds a hint of smoky sweetness to the dark chocolate which really enhanced the flavors.
I adapted and modified the basic frozen yogurt recipe from my all time favorite frozen dessert cookbook,
chocolate and chili frozen yogurt
1 generous quart
1 quart (32 ounces) plain low-fat greek yogurt
2 tablespoons + 1 1/2 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch (cornflour)
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/4 cup heavy cream
6 tablespoons unsweetened dark cocoa
1/4 teaspoon ancho chili powder
1/4 cup light corn syrup (I use fructose free light corn syrup which is a glucose solution and does not contain fructose but you could use glucose as well)
2/3 cup (5 1/4 ounces) raw brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Place the yogurt in a sieve lined with two layers of clean cheese cloth or muslin. Allow the yogurt to drain for 2 hours in the refrigerator. You will get about 3/4 cup of liquid. Discard the liquid and keep the yogurt aside (or you can add to baked goods for a little extra nutrition).
2. Whisk the two tablespoons of milk with the cornstarch to form a slurry and keep aside.
3. Place the cream cheese in a large glass mixing bowl.
4. In a thick bottomed saucepan, whisk the 1 1/2 cups of milk, heavy cream, cocoa, chili, corn syrup and sugar. Bring the contents to a boil over medium-high heat and boil for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and quickly whisk in the cornstarch-milk slurry.
5. Place the saucepan on the stove and bring it back to a boil on medium-high heat and cook for 1 minute until slightly thickened.
6. Gradually add a little bit of the hot liquid from the saucepan into the glass mixing bowl containing the cream cheese. Whisk until completely smooth. Add the rest of the hot liquid and vanilla and whisk until the contents are completely blended. Mix in the strained yogurt from step 1. (You can also pass this liquid through a sieve to make sure any clumps or lumps are removed).
7. Transfer the yogurt mixture to a gallon ziploc freezer bag. Seal the bag and place in an ice water bath and cool for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature is 40F.
8. Pour the liquid into the frozen canister of your ice cream maker and churn until the liquid becomes thick and creamy. (Alternatively, follow the instructions written in the manual of your ice cream maker for brand specific instructions).
9. Pack the frozen yogurt into a freezer-safe storage container with an airtight lid. Cover with a sheet of parchment paper and press gently to remove any trapped air. Seal the container with the lid and freeze the yogurt for 4 hours or until firm before serving.
What a weekend! Irene, the hurricane was nothing compared to suddenly catching someone break into your car and then run away with the phone and G.P.S charger. I guess that is the risk you take when you park on the streets in D.C. I am so proud of Snoopy for his alertness to the sound of the window getting shattered and thankful that nothing of any real value was stolen.
When I crave something, I must have it. This is probably my downfall when it comes to food. This week I am craving African and Middle Eastern food but all that pops in my head is Morocco. I am thinking of Moroccan tiles with the pretty patterns and clay tagines on a fire stove. Whenever, I think Moroccan food or North African food, Harissa is the first word that comes to my mind. Hot minty and garlicy, it is probably one of the hottest flavorings that can be used with meats, fish, rice, couscous, salads, soups etc. The recipe varies a little from household to household and you can make it your own by varying the ingredients. Traditionally, caraway seeds are added but fennel seeds can also be used as a substitute. I used a sun-dried chili called the Kashmiri chili since they are extremely hot and posses a strong flavor to add heat to this sauce. To store Harissa, your options include canning or keeping it in an air tight jar or container. The olive oil that is left behind can be used to dip bread or dress salads.