Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Sweet and Savory Sorbet

photo by  Angela Schmeidel Randall
It's been ridiculously humid lately. And when I start sweating, I'm all about icy sweet treats...as in, smoothies, ice cream, frozen yogurt and my latest crave - sorbet.  Indeed, there is a particular brand of "blood orange" sorbet that I've been hooked on the past few years. It's low in calories and hits the spot on a hot day. Only thing is, it has sugar. Fortunately, the wonderful world wide web is packed with options, so I've since discovered some super yummy sucralose-sweetened variations. If you've got a little time to kill during these dog days of summer, try out one of these delicious low-fat sweet treats. Trust me, you'll be grateful later. Enjoy!

Cantaloupe Banana Sorbet
Ingredients:
  • 1 small cantaloupe, peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks
  • 1 banana, sliced
  • 1/4 cup SPLENDA® Sugar Blend
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons creme de menthe liqueur
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lime peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Directions:
  1. In a food processor or blender, combine all ingredients.
  2. Process until smooth, then scrape into an ice-cream maker and freeze according to manufacturers directions. Or scrape into a shallow metal pan, cover, and freeze 4 to 6 hours.
  3. Break mixture into chunks and pulse 10 to 20 seconds in food processor or just until no longer chunky and somewhat creamy in texture. Freeze up to 1 month. Pulse briefly in food processor just before serving.

Icy Lemon Sorbet
Ingredients:
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 12 packets SPLENDA® ESSENTIALS™ No Calorie Sweetener with Fiber
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 8 lemons (for optional decorative serving)
  • 8 sprigs fresh mint sprigs
Directions:
  1. Combine boiling water and SPLENDA® ESSENTIALS™ No Calorie Sweetener with Fiber in a large bowl, stirring until dissolves; cool slightly. Stir in lemon rind and juice. Pour mixture into a 9-inch square pan; cover and freeze.
  2. Cut tops from lemons; remove pulp. Set aside.
  3. Remove sorbet from freezer; let stand about 10 minutes. Scrape sorbet surface with a spoon; scoop or spoon sorbet into lemon shells or into small serving dishes. Garnish with fresh mint, if desired.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Run, Audrey, Run!

photo by Mike Baird
I think I've gone crazy. Seriously. I let a friend talk me into joining a half-marathon training program, with the goal that I would somehow go from slacker to speed demon in less than three months. My third day with the group, they wanted us to run four miles. Whoa! Needless to say, I spent the latter part of the evening, lying on the sofa, watching the Olympics with ice bags on my sore shins.
Sadly, back in the day when I was young and fit, I could handle distance! I was on the cross country team and was always one of the first to cross the finish line in any gym class race. And then, thanks to family genes, I started to struggle with knee issues...and then back issues. And while I continued competing in other sports, I gave up running. In recent years, I could barely even run a few blocks without feeling stiff and wheezy. Hopefully that won't be the case much longer.
Oh well...no pain, no gain, right? And I already committed to do this dang program, so I'm not giving up now. Wish me luck, y'all. In exactly two months, I'll be running in my first half marathon - so I need all the positive juju I can get.