August 30, 2010

honeydew popsicles; or, how to survive August in Texas


A steady diet of popsicles is the only way to survive August in Austin, and I speak with great authority, since it's now the end of August and I've survived. I love anything melon flavoured; I love these popsicles, which are sweet and simple. I love my friend Kate for modelling them for me, and for still being my friend when I told her that Australians call them iceblocks.

I bought this popsicle mould, which I like because it uses wooden popsicle sticks. I wanted that summery nostalgic woody popsicle stick flavour; it feels essential to me. And you can compost them afterwards, or put them to other uses, so that you don't feel too hedonistic about it.

Also, I can't believe it's been five months since I lasted posted. Can five months really go so quickly? I spent most of my summer at home in Sydney (where it was winter), and another chunk of it driving around the gorgeous American south west. Photos to come. I'm happy to be back in my little kitchen and cooking again (that is, I will be when it gets cool enough to consider turning my oven on).

Honeydew Popsicles
adapted from Martha's honeydew agua fresca recipe

makes 8-10 popsicles

the flesh of one ripe honeydew melon, seeds removed
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh lime juice

In a saucepan, add sugar to 2 cups of water and place over a low heat, stirring continually until the sugar dissolves. Remove the sugar syrup from the heat.

Using a blender or food processor, puree the honeydew in batches until smooth. Place a fine-mesh sieve over a large bowl or jug. Pour the honeydew into the sieve and strain into the bowl. Press on the pulp to extract more juice. Discard pulp.

Mix lime juice with the cooled sugar and water. Add slowly to the honeydew juice, testing for sweetness, and stop when you've reached your desired level. Adjust lime juice if necessary. The sweetness of the popsicles will depend entirely on the sweetness of your honeydew. I only ended up using half of the sugar syrup (I refrigerated the remainder to make more popsicles with) but I want to make sure you have a flexible amount to work with.

Pour honeydew mixture into popsicle moulds. Leave in the freezer for approximately 2 hours, or until the popsicles are semi-frozen (this amount of time may depend on the effectiveness of your freezer), and then insert the sticks/handles. Freeze for another 6 hours or overnight before eating. You'll need to run warm water over the popsicle moulds to extract them.