My name is April and I’m a popsicle hoarder.
That is the sobering realization I had this morning when I opened my freezer and counted 58 different homemade popsicles in 14 different flavors. It all started innocently enough about a month ago with 2 pints of Pudwill Farms blackberries, some organic sugar, and a little bit of fresh tarragon. I realized that I could make pure magic on a stick. Even better, I could SAVE that magic in my freezer and have it ANY TIME I wanted.
That is when the mentality of “If one is good, 1000 must be SO much better” kicked in. I started making about two types of popsicles a day from all of my farmer’s market loot. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a bit fanatical about farmer’s markets in the summer. It takes every thing in me to hold back from actually skipping around the booths of nectarines, peaches and strawberries. I realized I could now preserve those beautiful flavors in something other than jam. Before I knew it, my produce-nerd soul was knee-deep in a serious popsicle-making addiction.
As addictions often do, mine progressed to the next level: dealer. I had major popsicle overstock, and soon was meeting friends on my corner for popsicle pick-up drive-bys (seriously). The BEST part about making your own popsicles: it’s EASY, and when you make them at home you have complete creative control. The general formula is: pick your favorite fruit, blend it up, add some simple syrup, and pop it in the freezer. Once you have that basic skill down, you can get crazy and take your pops to the next level (i.e. swirl in cream or yogurt, or infuse herbs like tarragon and mint into your simple syrup). The only real “skill” involved is making simple syrup. Here is a basic formula:
3/4 cup organic sugar + 3/4 cup water+ simmering for a few minutes= 1 cup simple syrup
An important thing to note is that you need to make your popsicle mix a little bit too sweet. Apparently some scientific reaction occurs when freezing that reduces the sugar’s potency, so you need to overshoot the sweetness mark before you freeze.
If, like me, you favor instant gratification – get a Zoku instant popsicle maker (while you are at Amazon, you might as well get one ). You can try your frozen brainchild creation in under 10 minutes, which takes popsicle making to a whole new level of fun. This, no doubt, was a major contributing factor in the development of my popsicle-making problem.
Of the 25 plus varieties of pops I have made, one particular popsicle takes the Prom Queen prize…..she’s by far the prettiest and most popular. Feast your eyes on this beauty:
This is my Double Fig Vanilla Yogurt popsicle creation, which you, too, can easily make at home. Recipe after the jump……
Double Fig Vanilla Yogurt Popsicle:
– 1 1/2 cups vanilla yogurt. Buy the best, high quality organic yogurt you can, because this will make up 95% of your popsicle. It may be tempting to go Greek, but don’t – it will be too thick.
-1 cup simple syrup (recipe above- be sure to let cool).
-2 pints of two different kinds of figs, preferably of different colors (I used Black Mission and green Kadota)
In your blender, blend up 1 variety of your figs with 1/4 cup simple syrup
Mix in 1/2 cup of simple syrup into your vanilla yogurt.
Thinly slice up the other figs, and press against the side of your popsicle molds.
Taste both your yogurt and fig mixture, and add more simple syrup to taste, if not sweet enough (again, remember to overdo it a bit).
Fill popsicle molds 1/4 of way with vanilla yogurt. Using a popsicle stick, gently swirl approx 2 tsps of blended fig mixture. Repeat process until mold is full. Place in freezer. Eat next morning for breakfast.