As a kid, there are so many great things about summertime: no school, later bedtime, swimming, bike riding, and the treats.
Oh, the treats!
Roasting marshmallows after dinner was cooked on the charcoal grill, going out for ice cream, chasing down the ice cream man, watermelon, Jell-o pudding pops, and ice pops.
When I scroll through my Facebook newsfeed now, I see ads for or someone I know is having a Pampered Chef party. But when I was a kid, it was all about Tupperware. And one summer, my mom bought ice pop molds. These mold were particularly cool because the base was a shallow cup with a straw, so you could drink what melted. We weren't particularly creative with our pops. We made either iced tea or lemonade pops. But my sister and I had fun making them, and they couldn't freeze fast enough for us.
I now have my own ice pop molds, allowing me to carry on the ice pop making tradition with my son. The first pops we made were these mandarin orange cream ones. The classic flavors of summer. But wanting to expand the ice pop possibilities, I bought a book of recipes. This summer my son and I were flipping through it when we came across a recipe for chai tea pops. My son lives chai tea, and demanded we make them.
These are no ordinary pops for those with an ordinary palate. These are serious, sophisticated ice pops .... made right in your kitchen.
Which got me thinking ... With the closing of Crumbs, I think gourmet ice pops could be the next big thing.
Chai Tea Pops
Recipe from Ice Pops: Recipes for Fresh and Flavorful Frozen Treats
Makes 8 - 10 ice pops
- 2 cups water.
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 bags black tea
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 6 whole cloves
- 8 green cardamom pods, cracked with the side of a knife
- 6 peppercorns
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- Using a cheesecloth, bundle the cloves, cardamom pods, ginger, and peppercorns.
- Place the sugar, cinnamon stick, and cheesecloth bundle in a saucepan. Pour in water. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has completely dissolved. Remove the mixture from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Remove the tea bags, cinnamon stick, and cheesecloth bundle. Stir in the milk until blended.
- If using conventional ice pop molds, divide the mixture among the molds. Cover and freeze until solid, at least 4 hours or up to 3 days. If using sticks, insert them into the molds when the pops are partially frozen, after about 1 hour. Then freeze until solid, at least 3 more hours.
- If using an instant ice pop maker, follow the manufacturer's instructions to fill the molds and freeze the pops.