I love the idea of mix-ins for ice cream and I know I’m not the only one, as evidenced by the continually growing popularity of ice cream shops that offer mix-ins to their customers. More frozen yogurt shops are starting to offer the same service, so frozen treat fans can get the same combinations in a slightly healthier way. Aside from standards like chocolate chip and cookies and cream – which are familiar and rather obvious ice cream/frozen yogurt additions – why not use the mix-in technique at home to make some more unusual combinations? Or, you could co-opt the combinations advertised by some of the chains into far less expensive versions.
Inspired, I recently added some chopped up carrot cake to a batch of homemade frozen yogurt to create Carrot Cake Frozen Yogurt. (It’s not as strange as sounds – really! One company actually makes an ice cream flavor like this!) The slightly spicy cake went well with the relatively plain vanilla fro yo and I loved the novelty of having little bits of cake in my ordinarily smooth dessert. I added the cake during the last minutes of mixing in my ice cream maker so that it would be blended into the yogurt, rather than just sitting there in chunks.
I would add carrot cake to yogurt again in a heart beat, but this little experiment motivates me to experiment with other mix-ins. Maybe crushed biscotti, chocolate covered strawberries or a mix of bananas and peanut butter? If you’re at a loss for ideas, don’t forget that there is always the standard fallback of mix-in ice cream stores: candy bars.
Carrot Cake Frozen Yogurt
2 large egg whites, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
3 1/2 cups nonfat yogurt (500 grams; I use Fage Greek Yogurt)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 medium-large slice of carrot cake, in chunks*
Whisk vanilla into yogurt until it is smooth and set aside.
Beat egg whites until they nearly reach soft peaks, then add sugar gradually while beating at medium-high speed until you have soft peaks and the sugar is dissolved, 4-5 minutes.
Fold yogurt into egg whites in 3 or 4 additions, making sure it is very well incorporated. Pour into your ice cream maker and freeze as directed (or without an ice cream maker, as described above). Add in cake chunks during the last few minutes of mixing, or cut into smaller pieces and stir in once mixing is complete.
Store in an airtight container in the freezer if not eating it right away.
*Be creative. Use any combination of cakes, cookies, fruit or candy that sounds good to you!