Saturday, July 16, 2011

watermelon, lemonade, + berry ice pops for grown-ups

for our 4th of july gathering, i wanted a festive dessert. inspired by the grown-up pops in SL's Ultimate Backyard Pizza Party article last month, i decided gourmet popsicles + prosecco was the way to go. of course, i opted for champagne over prosecco, given the blog + all.
[via Southern Living]

i found this recipe inspiration and, as usual, added my own twist. it was fairly easy, but involved several phases for the layered effect of the popsicles.

6-8 popsicle molds [you could use 8oz paper cups]
6-8 wooden popsicle sticks [if you have molds, the accompanying sticks may not work due to the layering]

watermelon layer
  • 2 1/2 cups 1/2-inch cubes seeded watermelon (from 2-pound piece)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
lemonade layer
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
berry layer
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries (from three 1/2-pint containers) 
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1. blend watermelon + sugar in food processor until smooth. pour mixture evenly into popsicle molds, about 1/3 full.

2. freeze the pops. depending on the depth of your molds, you may need to insert the sticks into this first layer. if so, it can be tricky to get them to stay in place. i used tape to hold them into place by taping off a grid over the tops of the molds. once the layer hardens, the sticks will be in place + you can remove the tape. if using commercial molds whose sticks have the "drip-catcher" or dual-purpose "lid," DO NOT USE IT. if you do, you won't be able to add the additional layers since the bottom layer will have frozen to the popsicle stick.

3. while the first layer is freezing, you can prepare the lemonade & berry mixtures. prepare the lemonade by boiling 1/2 cup water and sugar in a small heavy saucepan, stirring to dissolve the sugar + prevent from burning.

4. remove sugar water from heat. add lemon juice, orange juice, and vanilla. let cool to room temperature.

5. while the lemonade mixture cools, prepare the berry layer. stir the blueberries, blackberries, 1 cup water, and sugar in medium heavy pan until the sugar dissolves, stirring not to burn.

6. boil until the berries are very soft and easily break open with the back of a spoon. remove from heat.

7. strain the berry mixture, pressing the fruit to extract as much juice as possible. mix in the lemon juice and let cool.

8. Once the watermelon layer is frozen solid, add the cooled lemonade layer and let freeze for a few hours.

9. Once the lemonade layer is frozen, add the berry layer and let freeze until ready to serve.

[layered pops. molds from crate + barrel]

10. When ready to serve, fill large wine glasses half full of champagne. Place the frozen popsicles into each glass and serve.

[here's today's bride-to-be enjoying her last pop as a singleton! in a few hours, she'll be a Mrs.]

As the pops melt, the champagne becomes a little flavored. The combination of the flavors pleases the tastebuds. This is an absolute crowd-pleaser. Everyone will have a different favorite flavored layer + they won't last long!

If you have leftover mixtures like I did, you can easily make a granita instead of letting it go to waste.

1. after you add each mixture to the pops, pour the leftover into a small freezer-safe dish and place in the freezer. periodically rake a fork across the freezing mixture to prevent it from becoming a solid.
2. add in the remaining leftovers, and continue to rake into small granules.
3. keep it in the freezer for a quick summer treat!

1 comment:

  1. I am so impressed - these sound great!

    and... I miss you, lady!