The yogurt pops are just as easy to make as it is satisfying to consume. I have mentioned before, that the flavored yogurts are your best bet for an (almost)-instant popsicle treat. Just fill up your popsicle molds with ready yogurt and freeze.
But I still feel guilty for its sugar content. The frozen yogurt sometimes can taste just as good as they are straight off the tubs from the chiller compartment. If you have made enough ice cream, you’ll know that more sugar/ sweetener is required for the recipe because the ice cream (or anything desserts frozen) will taste blander when frozen. I have to disregard all my diet concerns when making ice cream at home, but it’s good to know how much sugar you are getting, and what commercial joints are adding in, this sort of deter me from binging on ice cream when I am feeling for a sweet fix. The hot days lately aren’t exactly helping with my curbs either.
So enter plain/greek/greek-style yogurts as the base for today’s popsicle recipe, plus bananas and blueberries as the natural sweetener. Here’s roughly how:
Blueberry Banana Yogurt Popiscle
- Plain yogurt (I used full fat version for a creamier texture)
- 1 large banana (the riper, the sweeter, the better)
- 1/4 cup blueberries (fresh or thaw them if frozen)
– In a food processor, blend banana and blueberries until smooth.
– Measure this banana/blueberry mixture in a measuring cup, and fold into twice as much yogurt till it is well mixed. The more yogurt you have in the mixture, the more creamy and less icy it will be. My own preference for the banana to yogurt ratio is 1 : 2. Feel free to adjust.
– Taste the mixture, and add some honey if it is not sweet enough.
– Scoop mixture into the mold. I added 2-3 blueberries first into mold to make the popsicle look nicer, totally optional.
– Tap the mold on the table a few times before freezing, to get rid of air pockets within the mixture.
– Freeze till popsicle is set, at least 3 hours.
++ Notes To Self ++
I use full fat yogurt for a creamier texture end result.
The riper the banana, the sweeter it is.
Fresh or thawed frozen blueberries are both okay for this recipe.
Inspired by the many cashew butter ice-cream all over the web, I decided to try one out for my popsicle project. According to this recipe from My New Roots, I could team it with any fruit I want : peaches, blackberries, plums, or mangoes. I went for bananas.
DIY Popsicle Version 00 : Cashew Butter Popiscle
1. Base : Soaked 70 grams of raw cashew nuts overnight in the fridge. Next day, blend it on high speed with 2 tablespoons of water and honey(or any other sweetener like agave or maple syrup) until smooth. Add in 2 large bananas (cut) and continue blending.
2. For some bites : None. I wanted the the final texture was really smooth, with some nutty taste from the cashews.
I asked myself this before making these Yakult popsicles: “Does freezing Yakult kill the Shirota strain?” Nope, see answer to question 14 here. Guess it’s the same as freezing yogurt. They just go dormant.
Somewhere between the original and the orange flavor, right in the middle, things were not freezing well, all my 4 popsicles broke off at the same place when I tried to unmold them. But they were still yummy nonetheless.
DIY Popsicle Version 007 : Yakult Popiscle
1. Base : Yakult drink (or other fermented milk drink) in 4 flavors. Wait for one layer to freeze, before adding the next flavor.
2. For some bites : None. I am getting lazy here….. 🙂
When pomegranate juice/ juice concentrate were once making the anti-oxidant/superfood headlines years ago, I thought they were, too expensive; to drink the bottled version daily? The frequency was suggested by the promoter in the pharmacy, of course, to boost consumption level and speed up sales.
Pomegranates also looked too complicated a fruit to be de-seeded if I want to buy it fresh, eat it pulp and all, after all fresh is the best, right? Turns out de-seeding is not that difficult. De-seed like a pro here (actual de-seeding starts 4:40min, but the overall video is interesting to watch for more information on pomegranate) or here (actual de-seeding starts at 1:30min). Just be careful not to let the juices stain your shirt.
Since then, I have been buying the fruit only when it’s in season, (I got these last month) and make my own pomegranate juice with a juice extractor. I don’t eat the fruit as I still haven’t acquire the taste of consuming the seeds along. My kids have no problem with that though, so I’ll save a small bowl of the fruit for them and juice the rest.
On this particular day, I juiced another 2 pomegranate to make popsicles. In case you haven’t tried fresh pomegranate juice before, it tastes like thickened Ribena, but not so sweet, which is yummy!
DIY Popsicle Version 006 : Pomegranate Popiscle
1. Base : Fresh pomegranate juice only
2. For some bites : I did not add any, but I have come across some adding blueberries to their pomegranate popsicle recipes. Double the anti-oxidant level! 🙂
Picked up a bottle of sports drink on impulse after an evening run. Always find them a tad too sweet, but a sudden urge for the taste of citric acid in my mouth (weird?) kicked in, and I only had a couple of fizzy drinks to choose from the vending machine, so this appeared to be the most rational one after a workout.
As I could not finished the whole bottle, the leftovers went into the popsicle molds. The good thing about making popsicles with sugar loaded soda/canned drinks, is that you’ll consume lesser of it as a popsicle compared to if you were to drink it as a beverage. Each popsicle mold has a 70ml capacity, so a can of soda is more than enough to make 4 servings (my Daiso mold comes in set of 4 popsicles). The Big Man get the same level of satisfaction from eating one popsicle and from drinking a can of soda, but the amount of sugar consumed makes all the difference.
Leave the opened soda can standing on the counter for a few minutes till all the fizz are gone, before pouring it into the mold. Otherwise, there will be lots of air pockets when the popsicle is done freezing.
The taste of this popsicle reminded me of the 10 cents ice tubes we used to eat during the younger days.
DIY Popsicle Version 005 : Sports Drink Popiscle
1. Base : Any sports drink of any flavor, if carbonated, leave the opened can/bottle on counter for a few minutes to let all the fizz out.
2. For some bites : I did not add any, but I think a few squeeze of lemon or lime could intensify the acidity of the popsicle. The freezing process tame that down quite a bit.
Gosh, it has been drizzling pretty often recently, hasn’t it? But the temperature hasn’t really come down after the rain, neither am I enjoying any cool breeze from my kitchen window. So the DIY popsicle project continues….
Sticking to the preference for creamy popsicle, I turned to ingredients commonly found our local dessert for inspiration : Gula Melaka Sago / Cendol. I removed the sago and cendol bits as I don’t think they taste good frozen, but I kept the red beans (think: potong ice-cream).
You may end up with extra Gula Melaka Syrup, depending on how sweet you want your popsicles. Keep them in clean glass jars, and consumed within a few weeks.
DIY Popsicle Version 004 : Gula Melaka Coconut Milk Popiscle
1. Base : Make Gula Melaka syrup by melting 100g Gula Melaka with a bit of water (50ml) in a small pot over low heat. Add Pandan leaf (1 qty, knotted) and simmer till mixture slightly thickens. Remove pot from heat and let syrup cool down slightly, about 15 minutes. Remove Pandan leaf. Mix 1/8 tsp of salt to 1 cup of coconut milk. Add Gula Melaka syrup to coconut milk slowly till preferred sweetness level.
2. For some bites : Boil and cook 2 tablespoons of red beans till soft. Fill the base of the molds with some red beans first before filling the rest of the molds with Gula Melaka Coconut Milk Mixture.
Gula Melaka Syrup via Cuisine Paradise
Gula Melaka Sago via My Kitchen Snippets
First, an easy ice cream recipe : Always stock a small tub of frozen cut bananas in the freezer, that is all you need to make “healthy, sugar-gluten-dairy free, single ingredient ice cream” on a hot day.
Just puree the frozen fruit in a blender till they look like sticky “cream”, you may need to start-stop the blender a few times and use a spoon to move the frozen bananas around so that they get into the blades.
The end result is so close to the real thing; tastes, melts and glides around in your mouth just like normal ice cream, minus the guilt. You can re-freeze the puree to get a firmer texture, but I usually can’t wait, just scoop them out and serve direct on a cone, sometimes with toppings like chopped almonds or peanuts. Today, I blended more bananas and mold them into popsicles.
For the today’s popsicle recipe, I blended a bit of natural yogurt with the banana puree made from 2 large bananas. This is to add some tangy flavor, which I like in my popsicles, totally optional.
DIY Popsicle Version 003 : Banana Puree Popiscle
1. Base : Banana Puree. Blend and blend 2 large frozen cut bananas and 2 tablespoons of natural/ greek yogurt (optional) till you get a sticky mixture. Fill popsicle molds with puree. Tap the molds on the table a few times before freezing, to get rid of air pockets inside the mixture.
2. For some bites : None.
I made popsicles yesterday with Yoplait Mango Yogurt. If the creamy kind of popsicle is what you like, then there are a lot of flavors for you to experiment with at the dairy section. Some recipes online suggest draining away the extra liquid in the yogurt first, for a truly creamy texture. But I have no problem skipping this step, my frozen yogurt popsicles still turn out creamy, like ice cream.
DIY Popsicle Version 002 : Mango Yogurt Popiscle
1. Base : Yoplait Mango Yogurt. Simply scoop yogurt straight into the mold. Tap the mold on the table a few times before freezing, to get rid of air packets within the yogurt.
2. For some bites : The yogurt already came with chunks of mangoes. If you prefer more bites, or a different species of mango like the Indian or Thai variety, feel free to dice some and add them in first before filling the mold with yogurt.
The weather is so hot lately, I am glad I finally bought these $2 popsicle maker (makes 4 popsicles) from Daiso to make my own healthy cold treats. There are so many combinations of fruit juice and cut fruits to use, it’s really up to your own imagination and creativity to come up with your favourite recipe. Or leave it to the store’s fruit section promotion to decide. 🙂
Just stick to these 3 simple rules:
– Always put the diced fruits into the mold first, before filling it up with juice.
– Freeze for at least 3 hours before trying to remove the popsicles from the mold.
– Run the mold under running tap water to slightly defrost the ice on the mold first, before attempting to pull out the popsicle.
DIY Popsicle Version 001 : Orange Strawberry Kiwi Popsicle
1. Base : Freshly squeezed orange Juice, about 2 big oranges is enough for 4 popsicles. The supermarket happened to run promotion for oranges at $2.80 for 10. Even if the oranges are sour, they will still taste fantastic as popsicles!
2. For some bites : Diced kiwi fruits and Korean strawberries. You’ll be surprised how little you need to fill 1/3 of the molds, before topping up with juice.