Before I get to the recipe, can we talk about that purple-ish stripe for a second? Are you trying to figure out what’s in it? Maybe raspberries, or perhaps blueberries or blackberries?
Ready for it?
It’s blood orange.
For some reason, when combined with the cream, the pretty red/pink juice of blood oranges turns purple.
I bring up the blood oranges because they have a very limited season. And while it was in the 70s and sunny when I made these, the weather right now is not what you would describe as “popsicle weather.” I debated holding onto this recipe until it was warmer, but I wanted to give you a chance to make these with blood oranges, because not only do they add a pretty color, they also taste really nice. They have a sophisticated flavor that’s sweet but almost veers into bitterness.
That said, if you can’t get blood oranges,and you’d still like a pop of color, I’d try crushing some colorful berries and adding a bit of the juice. Or you could always cheat with natural food coloring or beet powder.
Citrus Stripe Pops
3-4 medium limes
3-4 blood oranges
2 cups heavy cream, divided (1/2 cup per stripe)
2 cups 1% or 2% milk (1/2 cup per stripe)
1 cup granulated sugar (1/4 cup per stripe)
4 Tbsp vodka (1 Tbsp per stripe)
1/4 tsp table salt (Pinch per stripe)
Note: I use these bar molds or these star molds for my popsicles. But if you use these or any type that has a stick with a lid over the end, you’ll need to use popsicle/craft sticks instead so that you can pour successive stripes.
Separately remove all of the zest from the citrus using a citrus zester, and place each type of zest it its own saucepan. Set citrus aside.
Combine each zest with the cream, milk, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat. Let steep at room temperature, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.
Squeeze 1/3 cup juice from each type of citrus. Stirring constantly, slowly pour the juice into its matching cooled cream mixture (i.e, lime juice with lime zest mixture, etc). Stir in the vodka.
Strain each mixture through a fine sieve into a 4-cup glass measure (or any container with a spout for easy pouring), pressing on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible.
Now pour your first stripe, of whichever color you want. Let it solidify, then insert your stick, and pour the next stripe. Freeze again, and continue this process until your molds are full.
When you’re running hot water over you molds to remove your pops, concentrate the water on the end farthest from the handle. Otherwise the first stripe sometimes has a tendency to detach from the rest of the popsicle.
These are good even when it’s cold and rainy outside, I promise. But I hope it’s popsicle weather soon wherever you are.
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