Dining with the Doc: One-Ingredient Banana Ice Cream

For some time now, I’ve seen a recipe for a simple one-ingredient banana ice cream circulating on the internet.  The other day I had some really ripe bananas sitting on the counter and I decided to give it a try instead of making the usual smoothie or banana bread.  Now that I've tried it, I want to spread the word!

It's hard to believe, but when you blend chopped up frozen bananas in a food processor, in just a couple of minutes, it turns into a delicious, rich and creamy treat that tastes like soft serve ice cream.  It can be eaten immediately (this is what happened in my house since it was so hard not to dive in right away!) or if you prefer a firmer texture, let it harden in the freezer for a little while. When you take it out it will be frozen solid so it’s a good idea to let it soften for about 10 minutes before digging in.

This banana ice cream is perfect for the summer- it’s quick, easy and you don’t even need an ice cream maker.  It’s also low-calorie, gluten-free, dairy-free, cholesterol-free and vegan!  And it’s packed with a variety of important nutrients like Vitamin B6, fiber, Vitamin C, potassium and manganese.  It’s a perfect treat for your kids and they can even help you make it.  My 14-month-old adored it!

Once you get the basic technique down, you can experiment with some different flavor combinations.  My favorites were Banana Peanut Butter and Banana Nutella. My husband loved the Chunky Monkey and my baby devoured the Strawberry Banana. The best part is that I didn't feel bad giving her this ice cream because it's just fresh fruit. Try this recipe- you won't regret it!

One-Ingredient Banana Ice Cream
Makes 4 servings

4 medium ripe bananas, peeled

Cut the bananas into 1-inch pieces.  Put them on a plate in a single layer and freeze until solid, at least 1-2 hours or overnight. 

Place the frozen banana pieces in a food processor.  

Puree until creamy, 2-3 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed.  

The ice cream can be served at this point and will have a texture similar to soft serve ice cream.  For a firmer texture, transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and place it in the freezer for at least an hour.  Let the ice cream soften about 10 minutes before serving. 


Banana Peanut Butter- add 2 Tablespoons peanut butter to the ice cream and blend.

Chunky Monkey- stir 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips and 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts into the ice cream.

Banana Nutella- add 1/4 cup Nutella to the ice cream and blend

Banana Berry- freeze 2 cups chopped strawberries with the bananas. Puree together in a food processor with 1/3 cup low fat milk.

One serving (plain): Calories 105; Fat 0.3g (Sat 3.4g); Protein 1.3g; Carb 27g; Fiber 3.1g; Sodium 1mg


Dining with the Doc: Seared Scallops with Creamy Corn

A lot of people think of scallops as gourmet, restaurant food but the truth is that they’re really easy to make at home.  They’re perfect for a light, fast and easy meal because they only take minutes to cook.  I didn’t grow up eating scallops and didn’t really discover them until I was an adult.  Now it’s a safe bet that I’ll order them if I see them on a restaurant menu.  When I was in culinary school, I learned the proper way of cooking them and now I love to make them at home.  In restaurants, scallops are often basted in butter and served with rich sauces but on their own, they're actually really good for you.  Scallops are low in calories and packed with lean protein.  They’re rich in a wide variety of nutrients including selenium, phosphorus and zinc.  In addition, compared to other seafood, scallops are typically low in mercury.  Scallops are also low in saturated fat but have heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.  Because of the numerous health benefits of omega-3s, the USDA dietary guidelines recommend eating two servings of seafood per week.  So the next time you reach for salmon or tuna, consider trying something different and grab some scallops instead.


Reading with the Doc: "The Greek Yogurt Diet" Giveaway Winners!

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway and left such wonderful comments! I held the drawing today and here's the play-by-play...

Sienna is clearly overwhelmed with excitement about the contest!


Dining with the Doc: Summer Zucchini and Corn Frittata

If you’re looking for a quick and easy dinner recipe that uses fresh summer vegetables, then try my Summer Zucchini and Corn Frittata recipe.  A frittata is like an Italian version of an omelet.  Mastering a perfect omelet can take years and in fact, many chefs are often asked to prepare an omelet as a test of their culinary skills.  But unlike an omelet, there is no fancy technique or complicated flipping involved with a frittata.  You simply sauté your vegetables, meat or other desired ingredients in a skillet, pour in your eggs and cook on the stove until the edges are set.  Then pop it in the oven and in just 10 minutes, you will have a fluffy, golden frittata ready to eat.  And to make things even easier, you can slice it and serve it right out of the skillet. 


Dining with the Doc: July 4th Cookout Recipes

In honor of the 4th of July, I've collected some of my favorite cookout recipes.  To go to the recipes, click the pictures below.  Have a happy, safe and yummy holiday!


Dining with the Doc: Strawberry Coconut Lassi

If you’re looking for the perfect drink to quench your thirst on a hot summer day, then my Strawberry Coconut Lassi is for you.  Lassi is a classic yogurt-based Indian drink.  Served cold, lassi can be savory or sweet.  I grew up drinking salted lassis in the summertime, which my parents would make by blending yogurt with ground cumin, salt and ice.  Sweet lassi, on the other hand, is made by blending yogurt with sugar or fruit along with other flavorings like cardamom and rose water.  Mango lassi, which is very popular in Indian restaurants, is made with yogurt and mango puree.  You can make your own flavor lassi at home by blending yogurt with your favorite fruit and sweetener.  Any type of berry or tropical fruit like papaya, pineapple or banana would work well in this recipe.  You could even try making it with stone fruit like peaches, plums or nectarines.  



I’m thrilled to announce the release of my first cookbook The Greek Yogurt Diet: The Fresh New Way to Lose Weight Naturally.  It was a pleasure working with my co-author Jo Brielyn and everyone at Hatherleigh Press.  It’s currently available to purchase through many online retailers including Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

The popularity of Greek yogurt has skyrocketed in recent years because of its great taste as well as its nutritional benefits.  My book focuses on these health benefits and shows you lots of creative ways to incorporate Greek yogurt into your diet.

Curried Chicken Salad

To celebrate the release of the book, I’ll be giving away copies to 2 lucky winners! To enter to win, all you have to do is leave a comment below.  Specifically, I’d love to hear your thoughts about Greek yogurt whether it’s simply why you love it, your favorite way to cook with it, or your favorite flavor…anything goes! 

Two winners will be randomly chosen from all the comments below.  The limit is one comment per person.  The entry deadline is July 17th at 11:59 pm EST.  I’ll announce the winners on my blog on Friday July 18th, so be sure to check back in then.  If you’re chosen, I’ll need you to email your address to so I can get the book to you. 

Good luck!

If you would like to purchase a copy now, click one of the following links. Thanks!

Grilled Peaches with Greek Yogurt and Honey


Cook Once, Eat Twice: Oven-Roasted Vegetables

One of my favorite ways to eat vegetables is to roast them in the oven. Roasting vegetables at a high temperature caramelizes their sugars and brings out their natural sweetness.  As the vegetables roast, they brown on the outside, become buttery soft on the inside and their flavors intensify.  I usually make a couple of large trays of them and store them in the refrigerator so that I can snack on them throughout the week.  They're great with rice or quinoa or as a side dish with grilled chicken or fish.  I also like to add them to salads, sandwiches, quesadillas and pasta dishes.    

My Oven-Roasted Vegetables are colorful, delicious and packed with nutrients.  For this version, I used a mixture of bell peppers, zucchini, carrots and red onion but you can use your favorite combination of vegetables.  I simply toss them with olive oil and season them with salt and pepper.  I also like to throw some whole garlic cloves on the pan along with the other vegetables.  As the garlic roasts, the flavor mellows out and it becomes soft and sweet.  In the winter I make the same dish but with heartier vegetables like sweet potatoes, parsnips, turnips and butternut squash.  Asparagus, beets, fennel, brussel sprouts and cauliflower are some other great options for roasting.  


Cook Once, Eat Twice: Pulled Chicken Quesadillas

In my last post I promised you another recipe featuring the delicious Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken that I made.  It's part of my Cook Once, Eat Twice series where I show you how to make a large batch recipe and then use the leftovers in a variety of other dishes. This week I decided to use my leftover chicken to make these scrumptious Pulled Chicken Quesadillas. These quesadillas are a terrific family-friendly meal that you can get on the table in a pinch. You simply layer chicken, shredded cheese and any other desired toppings on tortillas and toast them in a skillet until they're golden brown on the outside with melting, gooey cheese on the inside.


Cook Once, Eat Twice: Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

In an informal poll that I recently took on Facebook, I asked what kinds of recipes people wanted me to post.  The most popular response was slow cooker dishes.  It's not surprising considering how convenient slow cooker recipes are. And now that I have a toddler, I appreciate these recipes even more!  With most slow cooker recipes, there's minimum prep- you can simply toss all of the ingredients into the bowl of the slow cooker and turn it on in the morning.  When you get home in the evening, dinner is ready to serve.  This Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Sandwich recipe is also part of my Cook Once, Eat Twice series where I show you how to make a large batch recipe and use the leftovers in a variety of other dishes.  Besides sandwiches, pulled chicken can be used in soups, salads, omelets, burritos, pasta dishes, casseroles, you name it.  It also freezes well so it's great to have on hand when you need to make a quick meal on short notice.  Stay tuned for my next post which will feature another delicious recipe using this pulled chicken.



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