I was already a big fan of drinkable yogurt when I was asked if I would like some samples of Lifeway kefir. Kefir is also a drinkable, fermented dairy product, and I was happy to get to taste several different flavors. In addition to the health benefits of the calcium and live and active cultures in kefir, it also lasts a nice long time in the refrigerator. The samples I received arrived at the end of January, and the expiration dates on them are in mid-April. I immediately popped open the strawberry kefir to have a taste, and it was well-flavored, not too sweet, and pleasantly thick while very drinkable. Kurt and I could have happily and easily just enjoyed all of those samples as beverages, but I decided I needed to get a little creative. I thought a frozen yogurt kind of concoction would be a good direction to take, and I set about finding some sources for inspiration. First, I looked at the blueberry frozen yogurt in The Perfect Scoop, and then I found Clotilde’s recipe for lemon kefir ice cream.
In The Perfect Scoop, the blueberry frozen yogurt is made with lots frozen blueberries. I started with that idea. I pureed three cups of frozen blueberries with some blueberry flavored kefir in the blender. In the book, since plain yogurt was used, additional sugar was added to the ingredients to be blended, but since my flavored kefir was already sweetened, I skipped the sugar. That puree was then pushed through a strainer to remove the blueberry seeds and skins, and the result was a very smooth, purpley, and tasty puree. In Clotilde’s recipe, lemon zest and limoncello were added to the mix before the ice cream was churned. My limoncello still wasn’t ready, so I added some orange liqueur and orange zest instead. Then, the finished mix went into the ice cream maker for 35 minutes.
It wasn’t as icy as a sorbet, but the frozen fruit content took it in that direction. The texture actually fell somewhere in between sorbet and ice cream, and the subtle bit of orange offset the blueberry flavor well. To take it one step further, I also used the blueberry kefir ice cream in a shake blended with some peach kefir since I’ve been a fan of that combo since I first had blueberry-peach pancakes many years ago at Kerbey Lane Cafe. That was a glass full of frozen, fruity goodness. It was fun to mix and match the flavors and make frozen treats, but the remaining samples will be great instant breakfasts too.