By Maasi Saba
The heat is getting to me these days. From cooking in the mornings, to rushing to pick up my daughter at 11:45, mornings are hot, sticky, and stinky.
My kids always want something cold when they come home from taking the day’s exam. Regardless of the many things available for them in our fridge, they are never satisfied. And then they ask me the most confusing question. “Momma, what should I eat?” What!!!????!!!!. At that moment in time, I must have the scariest n most confused expression on my face. What am I supposed to know what they are in the mood for. Well, actually, as a mother I usually do know what they want. But it is usually junk food so I tend to act dumb. So I ramble off the list of things. Cold fruit? No. Some homemade lemonade? No. I’m hungry momma, not that thirsty. Sandwich? No. Sometimes I bake a cake or have some pastries in the fridge. No. No. Do you want some cereal with some cold milk? No. (That was our go-to snack when my siblings and I were young; when confused, a bowl of delicious cereal with cold milk was a calming and satisfying snack.) I know they want me to ask them if they can have some juice and chips but I never bring that up. So these days after 10 minutes of following me around my kitchen, and mind you its smaller than my bathroom. (So you can imagine the stamina I need to endure this in a small room). I ask them if they would like some ice cream. Depending on which freezer it is in, they will either get something in a solid form or just jhag (froth type ice cream). They have a big smile on their faces with glistening eyes at the sound of their mother suggesting the cold snack.
I love ice cream. My whole family, and my in laws all love to eat ice cream. The only thing is, in Pakistan, one can’t really find a healthy version of it. Okay, so there is no healthy version of ice cream anywhere, but maybe some with less sugar would be nice.
Searching on the Internet, I came across the many variations of freezing bananas as a healthy cold snack alternative. I thought I’d try it. These days the electricity isn’t going every other hour, so I felt it was the best time to try it.
I cut 2 bananas in slices, then added either peanut butter or Nutella as a tasty filling making a sandwich. On a few I added a toothpick for easy handling afterwards. Since it was hot that day in the kitchen, my Nutella ones slipped off, so when they froze, they were lopsided.
And taking bites was actually harder that I expected because it was cold! My kids and I were laughing and screaming in pain because it was hurting our teeth. You see, we were so excited that we didn’t think to leave it out for a few seconds before we stuffed our faces with the frozen bananas. But they didn’t melt! And my kids loved that part of it. They loved the Nutella ones better. Anything chocolate goes! I could actually hear my Mamu say “kurriyyae, Ty mainu ki pay kilandee pay yay. Mere daand!” Translation: Girl! What are you feeding me!
Overall, it was a great snack. You all must try it. Something cold on the coming hot days!