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Friday, September 6, 2013

Arnold Palmer Popsicles

It is blazing here in Southern California, with lots more humidity than we are used to. It's 103ºF here, and feels much hotter due to the sticky swamp-like humidity.

Like eat-ice-cream-for-dinner, sweating in front of the computer hot. So hot that my local grocery store was out of big stick popsicles. So hot my coworkers and I wasted like 10 minutes at work giggling over the innuendo involved in professing our undying love for big sticks.

Much love!

To get myself out of morbidly considering whether or not Miss Mochies can actually melt in a puddle, I busied myself making popsicles with the Zoku quick pop maker Mr. Mochi gave me for Christmas. I never had enough room in the freezer before this, so this is actually the debut recipe of the Zoku Quick Pop Maker for this blog.

Which I can totally say I'm now thoroughly addicted to. I made 4 radically different pops in one day, and we are in danger of this becoming a popsicle blog if this heat doesn't quit.

The Zoku made me think a little differently than I normally would about a popsicle, because whatever you put in the maker needs to be thoroughly chilled. So for this recipe, I needed to make sure I cooled the black tea before putting it in the maker. It won't work if you pour near-boiling tea in. I know that's totally obvious for most people but in my defense:

A) it's too hot, thinking clearly obviously makes you hotter
B) my faithful dixie cups don't give two shits, they will take hours to freeze anyhow

Okay, enough of my whining, I think the AC has finally brought our apartment down to a sultry 90ºF. (I have one of those super cheap window air conditioning units that only cool the air about 4 inches around them but still manage to make my jaw hit the floor when the electric bill comes due. Tiara, my faithful pooch, worships that thing and literally sprawls belly-up in front of it.)

Picture proof of my silly pooch!
Arnold Palmers: named after a professional golfer who drank them on the course and in the country clubs during his career. They are a totally delicious concoction of black tea and lemonade, although there are many variants now, such as green tea/lemonade, peach-flavored black tea/lemonade. Everyone makes them a little different; 50/50 black tea/lemonade, heavy on the tea, heavy on the lemonade, etc.  

I'm not a fan of overly sweet drinks, so the unsweetened black tea cuts the lemonade wonderfully, while the lemonade offers a bit of sweetness and acidity to counterbalance the bitter astringency of black tea. I don't drink sodas very often (too sweet and the carbonation burns my throat, not thirst-quenching at ALL), so the Arnold Palmer is my drink of choice. I like it heavy on the black tea, light on the lemonade, but for this popsicle I made it the more traditional 50/50 so it would be sweeter.

I was chugging them when I decided they would make a fantastic popsicle! Without further ado (or heat-induced rambling):

Arnold Palmer Popsicles

1 cup water
1 cup lemonade (premade or make your own with water, lemon, and sugar to taste)
1 tsp loose black tea (or 1 tea bag)

Heat the water to boiling, and steep the tea for 2-3 minutes depending on how strong your tea is and how strong you like your finished brew. Mix with the lemonade. Now if you have a Zoku, you will want to chill this mixture in the fridge/freezer for best results. If not, feel free to pour into your normal pop molds and freeze until firm. Too lazy to wait to chill or it's too hot to even heat a mug in the microwave? Buy unsweetened black iced tea ready-made along with the lemonade.

You can sweeten the iced tea if you feel that this pop is not sweet enough, just throw a teaspoon or two in the hot tea to dissolve.

I made these pops with the zoku quick pop maker and put in a stripe of lemonade, but since it was my first time using it, I got impatient and started tilting it around to see if it was frozen and so that's the weird effect on the stripe. Hey, don't judge, it was hot.

Disclaimer: I got nary a penny from Zoku. In fact, they got some of my hard earned dog-wrestling cash.

See Also:
Kero Kero Pop!
X-rated Mimosa Pops
Nutella Fudgesicles

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