Admit it.. you read the words "ice-lollies" and were instantly transported back to your childhood. It would have been summer, either after school or the holidays would have begun... With your meagre pocket money, you and your motley crew of friends would have bought these brightly coloured ice lollies and then, licked and slurped your way to summer-time bliss!!
Your lips would turn the exact shade of the lollies and every time, despite your best efforts, a tell-tale stain would appear on the front of your clothes!! And you still surmised, in all innocence, that your all-knowing mother had 'special powers' because, in spite of ensuring utmost secrecy, she always seemed to know when you'd had one!!!
We are right in the middle of summer and with ice-creams, sorbets, fro-yos, ice-lollies and granitas all doing the rounds on blogosphere, it was only a matter of time before I got into the act. Caroline from the utterly fabulous blog, The Patterned Plate, had me on ice-lollies with this beautiful post of hers. It was her words, more than anything, that got me thinking about ice-lollies and their link to our childhood!!
Wanting to go all natural, I pondered over my flavour combinations. I wanted to go for something summery, fresh and vibrant. Watermelon seemed an appropriate choice. .. and its bright red colour the deal-clincher. Mint seemed a natural pairing for the season and the fruit in question. But, honestly, play around with this recipe in any way you want. Use a fruit of your choice.. be it summer berries or mango, add water or yoghurt and if adventurous, spike it with alcohol for an adults-only version!!!
The lollies, when unmoulded, were delightful, to say the least. The taste of the watermelon is heightened with the addition of mint. The mint lends this subtle, refreshing accent to the lollies that is much-appreciated in the summer.
Like I said earlier, play around with this recipe any way you want because the experience as you lick and slurp these lollies, is as enjoyable as it was when you were a child. Except, for one thing, with these natural ice lollies, your lips don't turn colour!!
Watermelon Mint Ice Lollies
The quantities of the ingredients will have to be modified depending on the size of your moulds. I used kulfi moulds and got 6 ice-lollies.
- 2 cups watermelon chunks
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup sugar (adjust according to the sweetness of the fruit)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup mint leaves, chopped
- Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves. Take it off the heat.
- Add the chopped mint leaves and leave the mixture to cool so that the flavour of the mint leaves infuses into the sugar mixture.
- Puree the watermelon chunks in a food processor and strain the mixture through a sieve so that the seeds are taken out...only strain the seeds behind, try and get some of the fiber through!!
- Strain the sugar mixture to remove the mint leaves and then add the sugar mixture to the watermelon puree. Stir the mixture so that the sugar is well distributed.
- Divide the mixture equally between the moulds and freeze for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- When ready, simply unmould and serve. To remove from the moulds easily, dip the moulds in warm water and unmould.
- Tip: If you don't have moulds, you can use plain small glasses, think shot glasses. Pour the mixture into the glasses and freeze them. After an hour, when the mixture is partially frozen, place ice-cream sticks (easily available in craft stores) into the glasses so that they stand upright. And then let them freeze completely.