I’ve posted several times about the book that basically changed our lives, Eat To Live. My husband read it, and long story short, I grudgingly followed in his footsteps and we made all sorts of changes to our diet. We added a couple of Netflix documentaries to our repertoire that really drove home the importance of what we put in our bodies, and the decline there has been in the things we put in our bodies. It’s shocking, really, and we both felt extremely good making the change.
Less meat, and many more Meatless Mondays! We switched to almond milk, which means less dairy. We still have dairy as a condiment, but when we do it’s organic and hormone-free. We strongly believe in moderation in all things, and this recipe is one of those saved-for-moderate times!
I also hated all of the food colors and ingredients I couldn’t pronounce. There was absolutely no reason I needed to feed my family tacos made with fillers and unpronounceable ingredients in those little packets when I could just use a little cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, salt, and paprika. Simple! And don’t even get me started on the autolyzed yeast extract (code for MSG) in Goldfish…
Yes, grocery shopping might have become slightly more expensive (sometimes), but I really look at it as an investment. I’m also a Cardiac ICU nurse, so I’ve seen and felt the importance of how we treat our bodies. Healthy food now, or hospital bills later? I will say, sometimes our health is out of our control, but really, I want to do as much as I can to ensure my family’s health.
Cue this exciting collaboration with Annie’s Homegrown Naturals. Annie’s had become one of my new favorite brands when we made the switch several years ago. I cringed at the thought of giving my toddler mac and cheese from the blue box. Cheddar bunnies for us thank you, no goldfish please! They especially loved the fruit snacks Annie’s sent us. Real flavors, natural dyes, just perfect.
One of the best parts of California is the farmer’s markets. Ohhhhh, the farmer’s markets. Honestly I’ve had a tough time here in Texas finding ones that compare, but I have found a few. I absolutely love buying local and supporting local farmers. I love knowing my grapes are not shipped from South America, and my tomatoes are truly fresh-off-the-vine. Annie’s has the same clean vision that I do, so I’ve been absolutely thrilled to support them while they support my family.
I did find this gem of a farmer’s market here, and it’s actually open all of the time. Ruibal’s Rosemead Market. The original store began in 1984 in downtown Dallas, which is huge and amazing! They now have several locations, and not only did this one have a beautiful array of fruits and vegetables, but the flowers! The nursery was beautiful! I came home with some lovely pink and white geraniums to hang on our front porch.
Well it’s cherry season, isn’t it?
Literally the best cherries I’ve ever tasted. The mister agreed.
These guys have always loved farmer’s markets. Especially the family-oriented ones stationed close to a splash pad or playground. They love the samples of interesting, delicious foods (who knew my toddler would like salmon crab cakes), new local cheeses, smelling the flowers, and doughnuts. Oh the apple cider doughnuts in the fall. Yes.
So with my cherries from the farmer’s market, I whipped up some Cherry S’mores Cups. Toasted marshmallow frozen custard. This, in and of itself, freaking blew my mind.
Make the custard base, toast some marshmallows, throw them in, chill, then make your frozen custard. This chocolate sauce is no joke either. Again, why buy hot fudge or chocolate syrup when you can make your own with wholesome ingredients in 5 minutes? And Annie’s Friends Bunny Grahams.
It looks creamy, yeah? Marshmallow-y? You can smell the toasty campfire, I promise.
Nice and messy, just the way I like it.
I filled each cup with the cooked-down cherries, topped with toasted marshmallow frozen custard and then the rich homemade chocolate sauce.
Summer s’mores, anyone?
If you love Annie’s as much as we do, join Team Annie’s! Their feed has opened an entirely new world of easy Mac and Cheese to me…drool.
#spon: I’m required to disclose a relationship between my blog and Annie’s Homegrown. This could include Annie’s providing me w/ content, product, access or other forms of payment.
- 1 c organic whole milk
- 1 c organic heavy cream
- 1/2 c granulated sugar divided
- 1/4 t salt
- 1 vanilla bean or 1 t vanilla bean paste
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 4 c marshmallows
- 2 c granulated sugar
- 1/4 c cocoa powder
- 1/2 t salt
- 1/2 c organic butter
- 1 can evaporated milk
- 12 oz. crushed Annie's Friends Bunny Grahams
- 10 T butter
- 3 T granulated sugar
- 1/2 t salt
- 1 pound cherries pitted and roughly chopped
- 1/8 c water
Begin by making frozen custard. In medium saucepan over medium-low heat, whisk together the milk, cream, half of the sugar, salt and the scraped vanilla bean (including the pod). Bring the mixture just to a boil. While the milk/cream mixture is heating, combine the yolks and remaining sugar in a medium bowl. Using a hand mixer on low speed, beat until mixture is pale and thick. Once cream mixture has come to a slight boil, slowly whisk a little bit at a time into the yolk/sugar mixture. Once it has all been whisked into the yolks, return it all into your saucepan. Over low heat, using a wooden spoon, stir frequently until the custard has thickened a bit and coats the back of the spoon. Do not boil, or the yolks will cook. This should only take a few minutes. Discard the vanilla bean.
Place marshmallows on a foil-lined pan and broil for a couple of minutes to toast the tops (watching carefully not to burn too much). Gently mix toasted marshmallows into custard. Add vanilla extract. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled and ice cream maker bowl has frozen sufficiently (generally overnight). Make into frozen custard using ice cream maker's instructions. Keep in freezer.
Next prepare chocolate sauce. Blend sugar, cocoa, and salt in a large pot on medium/medium-high heat. Add butter and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil, boil for several minutes. Remove from heat and stir intermittently until cool.
For Bunny Grahams Crust, mix crushed grahams with melted butter, sugar, and salt. Place about 2 T of mixture into each muffin tin, going up the edges to form a cup. Bake at 350 degrees about 10 minutes. Each cup with get puffy and bubbly. Remove from oven, and use the bottom of a small glass or flat-bottomed cylinder to flatten the bottom and sides of each cup. Let cool. Place in refrigerator to chill.
Last, prepare the cherry filling by heating cherries in a saucepan with water. Cover, stirring occasionally. Crush with potato masher.
Gently removed chilled cups from muffin tins with a knife inserted along the edge. Assemble by placing about 1 T cherry filling into each cup. Then a scoop of ice cream, and last drizzle with chocolate sauce.