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Family members addicted to sweets?  Can't live without them?  Except for babies, you cannot change them directly, and nagging and scolding is counter-productive, but you can sneakily influence them.  Anything is better than empty calories that these snacks usually represent. 

Sweet snack addicts often turn to ice cream in the summertime, a horror of sugar, cholesterol and often dubious additives, not to mention calories!  (Don't think I'm being self-righteous here - if I didn't keep a rein on it, and try not to have any in the house, I would eat an entire half gallon of quality stuff by myself - in four or five sittings - in a 24 hour period.  Easily!)

If you can't change their eating habits, you can often sneak in some healthier stuff along the way.  Here's an ice cream recipe that does that.  By the way, a smaller scoop means less calories!

Healthier Banana Split Plus

1 ripe but firm banana per person
Neapolitan Ice Cream or Ice Milk
Fat free real dark chocolate syrup
Chopped strawberries, fresh, or frozen and thawed
Canned crushed pineapple slightly drained, or other fresh, frozen or canned fruit
sugar if required
fat free or low fat whipped topping
chopped walnuts or pecans, or shredded coconut
maraschino cherries if desired

If using fresh strawberries, hull and wash.  Slice, and toss with a very small amount of sugar; this not only helps prevent oxidation but also draws the juices and improves the flavor and color.    Same for the second fruit if fresh or frozen, unless it's whole small berries, for instance, or an extremely ripe and sweet fresh fruit.

Slice a banana lengthwise, then across the middle.  Lay along the outside edges of a banana split dish or in a cereal or soup bowl.

Add a small scoop of each flavor of ice cream, preferably with the chocolate in the middle.

Add a generous portion of sweetened sliced strawberries over the strawberry ice cream.   Dribble chocolate over the chocolate ice cream.  Cover the vanilla with the other fruit; peaches, blueberries, raspberries, are great.

Top each scoop with a small dap of whipped topping.  Sprinkle generously with chopped nuts.  If desired, garnish each scoop with a fresh half strawberry, a blueberry or raspberry, a halved and pitted fresh Bing cherry or other fruit decoration.  Or drizzle just a little more chocolate syrup over the topping and nuts.

This makes a pretty big portion.  Use half a banana and VERY small scoops of ice cream for smaller kids, delicate eaters, or people with high cholesterol or elevated blood sugar who insist on digging their graves with their teeth.

My father took me for my first banana split, and I thought I'd died and gone to heaven.  I try not to indulge any more, not being good for one's health, but every once in a while......   

See Miami Sundae


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