Did you notice the frosty jar in the photo? If you've read my adventures with fruit, you know I have a real thing about preserving summer's bounty to be enjoyed year round. So when I saw that organic strawberries were on sale, I thought I should prepare and freeze enough for a few extra batches of either strawberry ice cream or frozen yogurt.
I just measured 1 1/2 cups of the finely chopped (12 pulses in the food processor) strawberries into each of the pint freezer jars and stirred 2/3 cup sugar into each, put the lids on, let the jars stand at room temperature for an hour to dissolve the sugar, and then put the jars in the freezer. Now when strawberry season is just a memory, I can thaw a jar and whip up a batch of ice cream or frozen yogurt.
If you want to make this, now is the time. July is National Ice Cream Month, and the third Sunday of July--that's two days from now--is National Ice Cream Day. It's so easy that if you make it for the first time, you'll ask yourself why you've waited so long! What is your favorite flavor?
Strawberry Frozen Yogurt
(Makes about 5 cups)
1 32-ounce container organic plain nonfat yogurt
1 1/2 cups hulled and sliced organic strawberries (1-pound clamshell more than enough)
2/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons Grand Marnier or triple sec
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 Strain the yogurt (I used Straus Family Creamery) for at least 4 hours in the refrigerator. You can use cheesecloth in a colander set over a bowl. I just happen to have found, way in the back on a very high shelf in my kitchen, a set of two 16-ounce yogurt strainers I didn't even know I had! Getting all that extra liquid out of the yogurt will keep your finished product from being too icy.
2 By hand or in food processor, chop strawberries as finely or as coarsely as you like. (I did about 12 pulses in my food processor similar to this one: Cuisinart DLC-2009CHB Prep 9 9-Cup Food Processor, Brushed Stainless) Place in a medium bowl (I use a 2-quart glass measure to make pouring it into the machine easier); stir in the sugar. Let macerate for an hour.
3 Add strained yogurt and remaining ingredients to strawberries; whisk until thoroughly mixed. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight. The only reason I added the liqueur is that a little alcohol keeps the frozen yogurt from freezing too icy and rock-hard, but the orange flavor is a great accent to the strawberry.
4 Assemble the Cuisinart ICE-21 Frozen Yogurt-Ice Cream-Sorbet Maker; turn it on. While it is running, pour the chilled mixture through the spout. Let mix until thickened, about 15 minutes.
5 Transfer the soft frozen yogurt to a freezer-safe airtight container and place in freezer for at least 2 hours. Remove from freezer 15 minutes before serving.