Fruit Popsicle and natural frozen treats5:05 PM
“Memories of childhood were the dreams that stayed with you after you woke.”
“Don't you wish you could take a single childhood memory and blow it up into a bubble and live inside it forever?”
These two quotes perfectly captures our never ending longing for the lost childhood. Those days when we had no worries and discovered new things on a regular basis and then coming to terms with those wonders with awe struck wide eyes. Now when am reliving those moments and see my kids facing the world with such vigour I smile to myself and remember my days.
Summer in my childhood meant Having Phalsa berries at my uncles, Running and wandering in my Grandfather's huge orchard all afternoon, Washing our huge second floor terrace in the dusk with water and then spreading natural mats and gathering, chitchating and snacking together as a family and Summer also meant Gopalda, a short dark ever smiling ice cream vendor in Santiniketan.
|Coconut milk and Blueberry ice lolly|
The Mitu ice cream Kart that he pushed around the university campus did not have much expensive ice creams as all his customers were underage school students like us, Who neither had any pocket money or could afford much. All we wanted were a piece of popsicle, a saccharine laden colourful piece of ice secured on a bamboo stick. and Gopaldahad huge stock of that in every possible colour.
Apart from the Jolwala (water based) popsicles, our next favourite were the dudhwala or milk based ice cream, and for people with more developed taste and with actual moneybag he also had Chocolate and tutti frutti ice cream. The pricey, real creamy ones out of the cup variety was out of our reach and with Gopalda at our side we never missed it.
He was not only our favourite ice cream vendor but sort of local guardian too. He would ask us about our studies, instruct us not to cross the roads on our own or shout at us if we decided to play in the rain. The last time I saw him he enquired about my kids, how my work was going. And when I told that I left my job he was pretty unhappy with the decision. While handing me the chocolate popsicle he told me join back once my kids grow up a little.
When I look back I can see many things that my innocent brain ever noticed then. I sometime think how he made his living with so many kids asking for ice creams which they hardly ever paid for. Those are pertinent questions and very practical too. but childhood is never about practicality and Gopalda with his kind eyes and effervescent smile will always remain the symbol of childhood hope for me. Our very own fairy Godmother who made our childhood special and in that way taught us to be humane.
This summer here in Chicago I made varieties of Popsicle, all fruity, all natural. The smoky and so very creamy coconut milk made me use them in the popsicle too so is some homemade yogurt. My kids loved them and I was happy because not only it looked good or tasted delicious but it was healthy for them too.
|fruit chunks (mango, blueberry, grape, orange, raspberry) in lemonade lolly|
- Anything taste less sweet when frozen so add sugar accordingly.
- if you plan to make layered pops like I did, always give at least an hours time for every layer to freeze. If you hasten, the layers will mix and you will end up with messy layers. That still would look beautiful and taste good but you just wont have definite layers.
- for the layered variety the stick goes in the pop maker just after one hour. Dont wait for all the layers to freeze before your insert the stick.
- and finally you dont need a pop mold. Use your glasses, bowls, paper cups whatever you have in hand. You can even freeze in a container and insert many stick to cut and divide it later.
- To unmold rub the mold in your palm or better hold them under tap water for a few seconds and then gently tap and unmold.
- Just make them and enjoy them.
Any fruit of your choice, choose the ones that are soft and can be crushed to get a somewhat smooth consistency.
I used Raspberry, Blueberry. Avocado. You can also use watermelon, strawberry, Jamun or Java plum, Mangoes
Blueberry coconut pops
Place handful of blueberries in a big bowl (say half cup). Sprinkle some sugar (2 tsp) on top and mash with a fork. keep aside for 15 to 20 minutes. Then mash them to pulp with your clean hands. You can also use mixie to do the job. Now add 1/2 cup water to it and mix everything together. keep aside.
Open and pour the entire content of a can of coconut milk in a glass. taste and add little sugar, I used 3 tsp sugar to 200 ml of coconut milk. Mix.
|Little hands in action|
The layered popsicles
as the previous method make a slush of Raspberries or whatever fruit you plan to use.
Whip 1/2 cup yogurt (fresh and preferably not very sour). Sweeten it with sugar or honey and also add zest of a large lemon. You can also use vanilla essence to mask the yogurt y smell. Keep aside.
Pour a layer of the slush. Freeze for an hour. Insert the stick. Pour another layer of yogurt mix. Freeze for an hour. Pour more layers and freeze till the whole mold is filled.
Use any fruit and make as many layers.
The Ombre popsicles
Pour one layer of slush till 1/3 of the pop mold.
Freeze for an hour, insert the stick.
Mix half portion yogurt or coconut milk to half portion of the same fruit slush. Pour 1/3 of the pop mold. Freeze for an hour.
Pour the plain yogurt mix to fill the rest and chill overnight.
This one is my favourite. The consistency will remind you of Kulfi just the healthier guilt free version of that.
Mash one ripe avocado till smooth. Mix sugar to sweeten it. Add coconut milk or normal milk, (I used condensed milk and did not add sugar) few drops of lemon juice and zest of one lemon. Mix all together. Pour in a pop mold and freeze for an hour.
Insert the stick and chill overnight.
All fruits lemonade pops
Take a glass of water and 4 tbsp of sugar and 1 tbsp lemon juice. Mix till sugar dissolves. Keep aside.
Cut chunks of fruits and place them in your pop mold. Pour in the lemonade and fill till top. Freeze for an hour, insert the stick and then chill overnight.
Similarly you can make mango lassi pops, watermelon pops. Think make and have fun with your kids.