Summer Vacations and Popsicles.

When you pick up the newspaper in the morning and are informed by the weather department that the mercury is expected to rise by another 5 degrees; which means the temperature is likely to shoot up to a 48 degree plus by tomorrow and it is the first day of summer vacations what should all the little children do?

Stock up the freezer with loads of what is and should be declared a summertime staple; we are talking popsicles. Sprinkling the popsicles with nuts and dry fruits, licking and slurping, dropping some on the floor, wiping off ice cream mustaches and repeating this every day is my little chefling’s idea of a perfect summer vacation!

Come join me and my little chefling who loves to have her friends over for popsicle playdates every summer and joins me in making what we call happiness on a stick!!

There is a popsicle that you can eat for breakfast (yes, you read it right!), a popsicle for when you get back home after playing in the blazing hot sun, another one for when it is too hot to go to the beach but your heart really wants to and finally one to celebrate Eid-Al-Fitr with all your loved ones.

Also if you don’t have popsicle molds, there is absolutely no need for you to step out in this heat to buy those. Disposable paper or plastic cups, silicone muffin cases, ice cube trays and small yoghurt containers all are great options that you may have at home and all of them work perfectly.

Without further ado, let’s get freezing!

Beach Time popsicles (Mango, coconut milk and toasted coconut popsicles)a

Beach Time popsicles (Mango, coconut milk and toasted coconut popsicles)

Enjoy these at home when the temperature outside is 45 degrees plus and you can’t get to the beach.

Summer cooler popsicles (Watermelon, mint and rock salt popsicles)a

Summer cooler popsicles (Watermelon, mint and rock salt popsicles)

For whenever the sun leaves you hot and parched

Breakfast popsicles (Yoghurt, stone fruit and granola popsicles)a

Breakfast popsicles (Yoghurt, stone fruit and granola popsicles)

Enjoy this breakfast for dinner!

Eid-Al-Fitr popsicles (Date, walnuts, banana and cocoa popsicles)a

Eid-Al-Fitr popsicles (Date, walnuts, banana and cocoa popsicles)

For your loved ones to celebrate Eid-Al-Fitr  with the flavours of dates and nuts.

But before I share the recipes, if you don’t have popsicle molds, here are some ideas to make these popsicles.

  1. Disposable paper or plastic cups
  2. Silicone muffin cases
  3. Ice cube trays
  4. Small yoghurt containers

Breakfast popsicles (Yoghurt, stone fruit and granola popsicles)

Makes 6

You will need:

  • 24 tbsp of full fat or greek yoghurt
  • 3 stone fruits (we used a mix of peaches, nectarines and plums or try a combination of berries)
  • A handful of granola
  • Honey to add and to drizzle
  • 6 popsicle sticks

How to make:

  1. Whisk the yoghurt in a large bowl.
  2. Chop the fruits (remember to use a child friendly knife and ask for help)
  3. Combine the fruits and the yoghurt. Taste. If your yoghurt is a bit sour , you can add a little honey at this point to make it sweeter.
  4. Fill the popsicle molds with the yoghurt and fruit mix leaving enough space for about a tsp of granola.
  5. Take the granola (about a tsp for each of your popsicles) and drizzle some honey. This will help the granola to stick together.
  6. Add tiny amounts of granola into each mold and put it into the freezer.
  7. After about 10 minutes, place popsicle sticks into each one. It will be easier for the stick to “stand” now that it is semi frozen.
  8. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  9. Enjoy your breakfast popsicles any time of the day. How about breakfast for dinner!

Summer cooler popsicles (Watermelon, mint and rock salt popsicles)

Makes 6

You will need:

  • Half a juicy watermelon
  • Loads of fresh mint leaves
  • 1 tsp of rock salt (or more)
  • 6 popsicle sticks

How to make:

  1. Chop the watermelon into pieces and ask mum or dad to run it in a blender.
  2. Tear the leaves of mint into small bits and add to the watermelon puree.
  3. To it, add the rock salt and give it a good mix. Taste and adjust the salt.
  4. Pour the watermelon cooler into popsicle molds and put it into the refrigerator.
  5. After about 10 minutes, place popsicle sticks into each one. It will be easier for the stick to “stand” now that it is semi frozen.
  6. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  7. Enjoy your summer cooler popsicles whenever the sun leaves you hot and parched.

Beach Time popsicles (Mango, coconut milk and toasted coconut popsicles)

Makes 6

You will need:

  • 1 ½ cups of coconut milk
  • 3 ripe mangoes
  • Handful of dry coconut slivers or desiccated coconut
  • 6 popsicle sticks

How to make:

  1. Peel and chop the mango into tiny pieces with the help of a child friendly knife.
  2. Ask mum/dad to help you blend the mango pieces into a puree.
  3. To the blender, add coconut milk and ask mom/dad to whizz it again.
  4. Pour the mango and coconut mix into popsicle molds.
  5. After about 10 minutes, place popsicle sticks into each one. It will be easier for the stick to “stand” now that it is semi frozen.
  6. While the popsicles get ready, chop the dry coconut slivers and toast them in a pan on low heat till they are golden brown. If using dessicated coconut, simply toast. Let it cool and keep it ready for coating the popsicles once they are frozen.
  7. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  8. Once the popsicles are ready, sprinkle and coat the ends of the popsicles with the toasted coconut. Make sure you get it all around.
  9. Enjoy your beach time popsicles at home when the temperature outside is 45 degrees plus and you can’t get to the beach.

Eid-Al-Fitr popsicles (Date, walnuts, banana and cocoa popsicles)

Makes 6

You will need:

  • One ripe banana
  • 8 dates
  • 8 walnuts
  • 4 tbsp of good quality unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 cup full fat milk
  • 6 popsicle sticks

How to make:

  1. Peel and chop the banana and deseed the dates and chop them too. Remember to use a child friendly knife.
  2. Smash 4 walnuts with a back of spoon or with a rolling pin.
  3. In a blender, combine the bananas, dates, smashed walnuts and cocoa powder and half a cup of milk.
  4. Ask mom or dad to help you blend till it looks like a thick puree.
  5. Now add the rest of the milk and whizz again. Now, it will appear more like a smoothie.
  6. Pour the mix into popsicles molds.
  7. After about 10 minutes, place popsicle sticks into each one. It will be easier for the stick to “stand” now that it is semi-frozen.
  8. While the popsicles get ready, smash the other four walnuts and keep it ready for coating the popsicles once they are frozen.
  9. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  10. Once the popsicles are ready, sprinkle and coat the ends of the popsicles with the walnut powder. Make sure you get it all around.
  11. Enjoy your Eid-Al-Fitr popsicles with your loved ones and celebrate this beautiful day.

Happy Licking!!

p.s. Also, see how my little girl set up an ice cream bar for all her friends last year this time and how they had such a fun time scooping, sprinkling and slurping!

Images: All recipes and photographs created exclusively for FoodeMag and updated earlier.

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