Sunday, March 5, 2017

Yogurt Fruit Cup

I'm sure you've done your own version of a Yogurt Fruit Cup, well here's mine - and I think you will want to make my version some time, too.

I find that yogurt with added fruit, from the grocery cold case, is way too sweet. If you read the ingredients of most brands, you will find sugar, cane juice, and/or fructose near the top of the list.

Click on any photo to see larger.

I prefer plain yogurt with fresh fruit mixed in. That's plenty enough flavor. But if you like your yogurt sweet then add your own favorite sweetener. At least you will know how much you are adding. And use any fave vegan yogurt too.

And, often the fruit on the bottom of the yogurt container is cooked, so it's mushy like jam. Or, if it's not cooked, the texture will still be off.

If the only yogurt on sale has fruit on the bottom then I will spoon out the yogurt and toss the too sweet fruit.

There is a lot of cheap and tasty fruit out there to choose from. So keep an eye open for seasonal fruit that hits the bargain bins at your local grocery store, farmers market, or local fruit stand.

It is quick and easy if you use whole fruit that can be mixed into yogurt, like berries and seedless grapes.

Some fruit will not age well when peeled or sliced, turning brown quickly, like banana and apple, so you want to eat a Yogurt Fruit Cup with these right away. In general it best to make just enough of a Yogurt Fruit Cup to eat in one sitting, as other types of fruit may water down yogurt over a few hours.

Start with a banana, as they are usually the cheapest fruit. During cherry season in May and June (at least out here in Los Angeles) I can find them for around a dollar per pound.

For extra crunch add an on-sale apple. We also get mangoes and peaches cheaply at my neighborhood Latin market.

One pound plastic bins of strawberries cost 99.99 cents at the local 99c only Stores. Whole pineapples even make an appearance there.

You can mix and match any favorite fruit you find. Some fruit may come on sale if it has blemishes. Since you are slicing up the fruit, it won't matter - just cut out any damaged segments.

Start you day with a 99 Cent Chef inspired Yogurt Fruit Cup sometime, especially when fresh fruit is on sale and in season.

Ingredients (2 servings)
  • 2 small cartons of yogurt - I used plain, unflavored yogurt. You can use any type on sale. 
  • 6-10 cherries - seeds removed. Okay to add more or fewer cherries.
  • 1 banana - peeled and sliced.
  • 1 mango - peeled, seed removed, and sliced.

Mangoes are a bit messy and tricky to work with. They should be ripe first, with a slight softness and yellow or reddish color, depending on the type of mango.

I like to peel them this way. First I slice into the skin from top to bottom four times. Make sure to slice intersecting at the top and bottom.

Now just peel each segment to remove half of the skin, at the widest half of mango. The mango seed is flat and wide so you want to slice off the most flesh along the seed. The seed will guide your blade, just follow the seed as you slice.

Once one side is stripped of flesh, then peel the other side and repeat, slicing along the length of the seed.

You can keep slicing around the seed to get all the mango flesh. Now just cut the mango flesh into bite sizes.

You know how to peel and slice a banana, I'm sure. Just make sure it is ripe.

Cherries are easy to peel, but can be messy, so make sure to work on a surface that is washable, as cherry juice will stain your clothes or any porous surfaces.

All I do to remove a cherry seed is cut around the middle of a cherry. Grab each half and give it a twist. One half of the cherry will separate off the seed. The other half will need to be sliced around the seed to finish removing it. Once you've done it a few times, it gets easier and quicker to do.
Once all the fruit is prepared, time to add the yogurt. I add some yogurt in the bottom of a bowl.

Next add the fruit. And finally I mix in the rest of the yogurt. 

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