As I sit here before you all today, I hang my head in shame. I just realized I let an entire month go by without so much as a hello, and you deserve better than that as I reader. What really makes me feel awful is that I had all these plans to journal about my 19th Ramadan and here we are more than a week in and still no post from me. Part of my problem is that I am still not sure what I want to talk about. I thought about showcasing our Iftaar meals, but I really suck at photography. Have you looked at the pictures in my previous posts? Yeah. Jelly Bean could have done better. I am not giving up, though. I have wanted to incorporate a food segment into my blog, and there is no time like the present. I guess that means I will be enlisting the help of free photo editing software online.
For those of you who are not familiar with Ramadan, it is a very special month for Muslims. It is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and is the time that Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. Some people may view fasting as simply abstaining from food, drink, and sexual relations for that time period, but there truly is more to it than that. During this time, we work to control strengthen our self control. You know that word “jihad” that gets thrown around in the media all the time? It doesn’t mean “holy war”. It means struggle. And it often refers to the struggle that each of us has with our inner desires. Cutting ourselves off from basic physical comforts is a powerful reminder, and helps us get back on track.
So back to the food thing. I have a tendency to be a bit of a self-inflicter when it comes to fasting. I will spend time drooling over food magazines and cookbooks during daylight hours, trying to imagine the flavors and aromas in a dish. It really is a form of torture. Then I decided, why not share some of those recipes with you guys? Lord knows I have enough issues of Food Network Magazine to build a house out of. My husband has threatened to throw them away unless I put them to good use, so here’s my attempt to hang onto the my collection.
My husband and I have been on a major ice cream kick, despite my lactose intolerance issues. Things do get ugly, let me tell you. But this recipe caught my eye because we happen to have an ice cream maker that has only been used once. Seriously, that is the story of so many appliances at my house. I made a batch of ice cream once from a recipe in the booklet that came along with the ice cream maker, and my family unanimously decided that store-bought was best. But this recipe might be different, right? So here goes:
Strawberry Soda Ice Cream
1 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk
1 ½ cups of half and half
¾ cups of red cream soda (such as Big Red) or regular cream soda
½ cup of whipping cream
1 cup of frozen strawberries, thawed and mashed
Whisk the condensed milk, half and half, red cream soda, cream and strawberries together in a medium bowl. Churn in an ice cream maker, then transfer to an airtight container and freeze until firm, at least 2 hours.
I made the recipe as is at first, the added my own flair. We ate the first batch before it eve hardened enough to take a decent picture, so here is a picture of the revised version, which ses mango and blueberries instead of strawberries.
I will warn you, this ice cream is not as sweet as conventional ice cream. The sweetness of the fruit mellows out when it is frozen and can come across a little tart. I didn’t mind it too much, but some of you may. You can always try pulsing it in the food processor for a few seconds with some simple syrup if you need the extra sugar.
And don’t worry, I didn’t eat ice cream for Iftaar. My Iftaar was the lovely smoothie below, made of spinach, granny smith apples, and blueberries. Bon Apetit!