On the hottest days of summer, there’s nothing better than a nice cold ice cream – in theory anyway. In reality, they can be a bit meh, more like a chunk of ice with barely any flavor that instantly melts over your hands into a watery mess.
But here’s an idea: What if you could make your own popsicles that taste really great? And what if they also look great? What if they were even…cute?
Below are instructions for popping the bear at the bottom left and notes on how DailyExpertNews for Kids created the other animals you see here. But these are really just suggestions to get your imagination going. Once you’ve mastered the basic recipes and techniques, feel free to go wild.
Basic recipe options
(Each basic recipe makes 6 pops.)
In a blender, blend 2 bananas with 1 ½ cups of vanilla yogurt or milk until smooth.
Blend 1 full cup frozen or fresh fruit (such as strawberries, mango chunks, or raspberries) with 1 cup vanilla yogurt and 1 banana until smooth.
CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER
Blend 2 bananas with ⅓ cup peanut butter, 1 cup milk or vanilla yogurt, and 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder until smooth.
1 batch vanilla banana base (see recipe above)
8 baby spinach leaves
Ice-pop molds and sticks
For the Features: Mini Nilla Waffles, Almond Slices, Large Black Nonpareils (or Mini Chocolate Chips)
1. Set up set aside a tablespoon of the base to use as “glue” for your bear’s face later.
2. Mix of the vanilla banana base with baby spinach leaves in a blender to make an extra green base. (You won’t taste the spinach!)
3. Casting the green base in each ice cream mold, filling about a third each.
4. Put the molds in the freezer and let them freeze for an hour. (Note: keep the vanilla banana base refrigerated during this time.)
5. Na an hour, remove the molds from the freezer, stir the vanilla-banana base well and fill the molds to the brim.
6. Put the mold lids and insert a popsicle stick in the center of each mold.
7. Put return the molds to the freezer and freeze for four hours or more, until completely set.
8. Demould your pops: Place a greaseproof paper-lined baking sheet in the freezer. Quickly run the molds under warm water and as you remove each pop, place it in the freezer on the sheet.
9. Decorate your pops: Line a second baking sheet with wax paper and place on ice packs, if you have them. Remove the pops from the freezer one at a time, place them on the sheet and use blots from the reserved base to ”glue” the bear’s facial features. (Use the toothpick to poke holes for the eyes and for the nose before holding the nonpareils.) Return each finished doll to the sheet in the freezer.
10. Leave put the pops in the freezer for a few minutes to freeze on the features. Then serve immediately!
base: Fruit base (strawberries)
Functions: Nonpareils, sprinkles, marshmallows
Remark: To make the white bunny belly: Before filling the mold, cut a marshmallow in half and place one half to half inside the mold, with the sticky cut side against the inside of the mold. Place the mold on its side in the freezer and freeze for an hour before filling with the strawberry base.
Base: chocolate peanut butter; vanilla banana (halve recipe)
Functions: Chocolate covered pretzels, mini chocolate chips, almond slices
base: Fruit base (mango); stir in ¼ cup of mini chocolate chips before pouring into the molds
Functions: Mini marshmallows (cut in half, sticky side ”glued” to pop); large black nonpareils (for the eyes); mini chocolate chips (for ears)
Base: vanilla banana; chocolate peanut butter (halve recipe)
Functions: Sprinkle eyes, almond shavings, roasted coconut flakes, sunflower seeds
Base: Fruit base (raspberries); vanilla banana base (halve recipe)
Functions: Banana chips, almond slices, pumpkin seeds
Remark: To make stripes, layer on top of your base, and freeze for an hour between layers.
Set designer: Andrea Stanley
This article was originally published in the June issue of DailyExpertNews for Kids. Find the section in your newspaper this Sunday, June 26 (and the last Sunday of every month).