The frozen fruity goodness of popsicles is pure summer magic — so much so that in the middle of winter, when I’m starting to believe summer is a myth, I crave popsicles. Many popsicles are safe for people with allergens, though I’d be concerned personally if I had nut anaphylaxis, but reading the ingredients list on your average box is an education in chemical compounds. We had plastic molds as kids, and my brother and I dreamed up all sorts of combinations — many of them were juice and Sprite, as soda carbonation leaves fun holes in a frozen pop. But this summer, I wanted to make something slightly more suited to an adult palate.
So with the aid of some fun new Tovolo molds from our local kitchen store (Things Are Cooking, on Main Street in Concord), I’m working on making my own. The molds are kind of amazing, and it’s hard to choose, but I am me, so rocket pops were a given. I also ended up with the twin pops, which do break apart just like the ones we occasionally got as kids. That’s probably one of the few things my brother and I were good at sharing.
Making ice pops can be super easy — just find a juice you like, pour, and freeze. But I wanted something different. Lemonade would be the other thing I’m really hung up on this summer, and it’s also hard to get it right — so I figured I’d make my own and make a fancy pop out of it. What I decided on was a tart lemonde with mint in the sugar water, and raspberries added to the pops. The result is a bit tart, a bit sweet, with a refreshing hint of mint and the surprise of bits of berries inside it. These took a little over 4 hours to freeze, so plan accordingly.
Raspberry-Mint-Lemonade Rocket Pops
- 5 lemons, freshly squeezed (3/4 cups juice)
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 sprig of mint (10 or so leaves)
- 1/2 a carton of raspberries
Squeeze the lemons and strain out pulp and seeds.
Put the sugar in a heat safe bowl and mix in the mint leaves. Pour the boiling water over the sugar and mint, and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Let the mixture cool to room temperature.
Mix the lemon juice and the sugar-mint water. Add the raspberries and lightly crush — you don’t really want to make raspberry-lemonade so much as you want a bit of essence of raspberry in the juice and some flattened raspberries that will be frozen into your pops.
The molds I have have a pretty solid base, but the openings aren’t huge. A measuring cup with a pouring spout worked perfectly. Be careful not to overfill them, as that gets messy, and you still need to insert the sticks.
Unmolding may require running the mold under hot water for a minute. The nice thing about these molds is that they are individual, not all one piece, which makes them easier to take apart. Do whatever your molds require, then sit in the sun and enjoy a pop.
If you’re looking for new molds, can I highly suggest rocket shapes? Too much fun. This recipe makes a full 6 rocket pops and a full six (so 12) twin pops. Cut it down if you’re only doing one mold. My original recipe made enough for 4 molds, but I don’t have them and don’t have near enough freezer space either for that many. If you have the small molds that are most commonly sold, this recipe may also make too much juice. If you have leftovers (you might) you will need to add a bit more water to make a drinkable lemonade; this is more like a concentrate.