Monday 11 December 2017

Nice cream... a healthy

Are you looking for a healthy ice cream to jumpstart your body? Susan Jane White found one. With mangoes

Ripe mangoes
Ripe mangoes
Susan Jane White

Susan Jane White

This isn't an ice-cream. This is an experience. I beg you to hunt down some Alphonso mangos in an Asian food store or Halal grocers. Alphonsos have a deliciously perfumed, honeyed flesh, and are cheaper, sweeter, more juicy and more jelly-like than the ubiquitous Kent mangoes at this time of year. And they taste extra special, because they demand an adventure to find them.

Although mangoes are high in natural sugars, they service our system too. Good news for sugar junkies. Most of the toxins that invade our bodies produce oxidation reactions (free radicals to you and me). Scientists warn that these pesky radicals raid our immune system and bomb our peachy complexion. Sound like a regular Sunday morning?

Ian Marber, nutritionist to the stars, recommends recruiting natural beauty bullets such as vitamin C, beta-carotene and the mineral zinc. These will help arm you against the ravages of aging, a war I'm currently losing. You'll find the first two resident in mangoes, alongside a hefty dose of other burly antioxidants. But you won't find zinc. Pecans have it, so we came up with a delectable topping to shoot this mineral into your system.

Mango Ice-Cream and candied pecans

Serves 4 adults or 4 children.

This is a luscious treat with a healthy twist. Instead of white sugar and dairy, we're using frozen banana to achieve the same sweetness and creaminess. Trade secret.The pecans are optional, but their salty-sweet crunch is explosively good.

For the ice cream, you will need:

3 bananas, peeled

2 ripe Alphonso mangoes

Trickle of cow's milk or coconut milk

For the candied pecans, you will need:

1 cup pecans (110g)

2 tablespoons maple syrup

Generous pinch of sea salt

The key to this ice-cream is using slightly more frozen banana to frozen mango, but 50-50 will still work beautifully.

Before freezing the peeled bananas, chop them into small discs. Freeze the discs of banana on baking parchment, making sure each slice does not fraternise with its neighbour. When they freeze successfully, you can store them in a freezer bag. Repeat the same method for the Alphonso mango flesh. Both can be stored successfully in the freezer until an ice-cream craving hollers.

While the fruit is freezing, make the candied pecans. Whack up the oven to 190°C, 375°F, Gas 5. Spread the pecans across a roasting tray lined with baking parchment. Roast them for 10 minutes.

Remove the roasted pecans from the oven and let the maple syrup and the sea salt join the party. Coat the roasted pecans thoroughly. Pop the tray back into the oven for a further 3-4 minutes.Remove the tray from the oven and give the pecans a chance to cool. Pecans taste much crunchier and sweeter at room temperature or chilled. Store them in a jar, away from thirsty fingers.

To make the ice-cream, you'll need to blend the frozen banana discs and frozen mango slices on the highest setting you have. A Vitamix or OmniBlend will do this in five seconds, a regular blender will take 15 seconds. You'll need a splash of cow's milk or coconut milk, whichever you're using, to give it some momentum.

That's it! Scoop the ice cream into pre-chilled tumbler glasses. Crush some candied pecans, then parachute them on top and tuck straight in.

Leftovers don't refreeze very well. I doubt you'll hate me for it.

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