Thursday, February 13, 2014
Day 3: Berry Beautiful Coconut Ambrosia
It's day 3 already! What are your thoughts on Sweets Week so far? I am pretty pleased with everything I have showed you, and proud of myself! I am really trying to come up with SIMPLE, and really natural recipes that require minimum ingredients but are still yummy.
After fiber filled brownies, and decadent chocolate mousse pie, I thought it would be nice to drop down the calorie load a little,( especially since I devoured 3/4 of the pie after work today...) and make a dessert that is lighter and less guilty. After thinking it over I thought fruit would make a nice dessert...but I decided to jazz it up a little. That brings me too ambrosia salad.
My mom always use to buy big tubs of ambrosia when I was in high school and I always use to sneak and eat it because it was SO GOOD! Sorry mom! Anyway, I wanted to make a healthier, less sugary version of this delicious dessert and add nutritional value on top of that! The way I decided to do that is with one of my favorite ingredients, that would be impossible to make jello without. Grass fed gelatin!
Great lakes gelatin is the best form of gelatin on the market in my opinion. This is the ONLY grass fed gelatin I have heard of, and the cows are healthy, and hormone/ anti-biotic free. Compare that to JELLO brand jello that gets their gelatin from sources that are less than ideal and full of artificial colors and flavors. No thanks JELLO, I'm good.
Gelatin is also a GREAT way to get protein into your diet because that's all it is. Pure protein! It helps keep your skin, and joints healthy and supple as well. And if you suffer from varicose veins like me, it is suppose to help strengthen the collagen that surrounds them and keep them from bulging.
I also decided to keep with the dairy free theme, because so many of us have sensitivities to dairy and I didn't want to leave anyone out. I usually make my own coconut milk, but for the sake of time, I used store bought. The brand I got was Thai Kitchen, which does contain guar gum- I'm not too fond of that but it will do in a pinch.
Let's get down to business!
*1 1/2 c frozen berries ( I have a mix of strawberry, blueberry, blackberry and raspberry)
OR- juice of your choice- preferably organic
*1/2 cup coconut water
*1 1/2 tbsp great lakes gelatin (+ a couple tbsp of room temp water to bloom it)
*1 can full fat coconut milk
*1 tsp raw honey
*pinch of cream of tartar (optional)
Thaw your berries. As soon as they are thawed, add them to your food processor with the coconut water and blend until liquidy and looks like juice. Or just use juice, it's up to you! After you've made your juice, you can choose to strain the seeds out or skip it. Take 1/2 cup of your juice and add it to a sauce pan on your stove and bring it to a boil, then turn off.
Now bloom your gelatin. Sprinkle your gelatin over the room temp water in a bowl, and whisk it until it becomes a paste. Now add the just boiled juice and whisk until gelatin dissolves. After you've dissolved the gelatin, pour the remaining juice into the bowl and whisk until completely mixed. Pour your gelatin mixture into a greased cake pan. I used coconut oil to grease mine. Refrigerate a couple hours until set.
Once your jello is set, it's time to make the whipped coconut cream! You will need either a stand mixer like mine (kitchen aid) or a hand mixer for this. Open your can of coconut milk, and scoop out the "fat" at the top, and leave the watery stuff in the bottom of the can, we won't be needing that. Add cream to mixing bowl. Add your honey. Now whip it! Just keep whipping on high until soft peaks form. This step is optional as well, but after you see the soft peaks- you can add a pinch of cream of tartar, that just helps to keep the cream firm.
Now just choose your dish, cut your jello into squares (or just plop it) and layer it with your whipped cream.
Enjoy! I love the flavors of berries and coconut together. So rich and creamy, and very low sugar. I know it's not really a treat that you would usually choose in the winter, but it's a nice lower calorie dessert option.
Well, I hope you guys enjoyed this ambrosia, I know I sure did! There's only one day left until Valentine's Day! What should I make tomorrow??? Let me know in the comments!
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