you know what i'm talking about -
you go into home goods,
crossing your fingers that the perfect rug
or lamp or outdoor furniture has arrived,
only to leave $7 poorer and the
proud new owner of ice pop molds.
it was kind of inevitable that they -
or something similar -
would one day find their way into our house.
larry likes cold desserts. a lot.
i'm not sure, but i think he would pass up
cake or a slice of pie or maybe cookies,
for a bowl of ice cream. a few months ago,
he was looking through the latest
williams-sonoma catalog and he pointed out
a mold machine that was very tempting,
but was absolutely overpriced. and last month,
when visiting my sister, she pulled
mickey mouse molds - procured earlier in the
year in disney - out of the freezer.
it was only a matter of time.
we are in major money watching mode,
thanks to the whole house buying/moving thing.
we cannot make frivolous purchases.
but, when i saw these molds, i knew that it
was a decision that meant more than spending
out of turn. it meant taking a stab at being
a good wife. if the tables were turned and i held
a deep love for anything icy,
larry would have bought them without pause.
he was away and i instantly envisioned filling
and freezing them, greeting him with a pop
upon his arrival. but then, it was three days later,
he was due home in about 4 hours and i hadn't
done anything. i started looking at recipes
and saw a lot more work than i was expecting:
simmering, blending straining, partial freezing.
i was not up for this.
but, then, i had one of those fortuitous moments
that i always think only happens to other people.
i saw a recipe for buttermilk and lemon ice pops.
two days before, still unsure which hamburger buns
i picked up a carton of buttermilk. afterward,
i was lingering somewhere at annoyance at myself
for the unnecessary purchase and the desire to make
a chess pie, but it was still sitting in the fridge,
but now, ice pops.
it seemed too good to be true.
there was only one thing: lemon.
i spent a long time anti-lemon.
i've grown out of that. but, i still got annoyed
this year when the irish soda bread that i picked
up was lemon-scented and i wasn't so
sure that i was up for lemon ice pops.
luckily, i love lime.
saying that i love lime is probably an
understatement. i can never have enough.
and so, buttermilk-lime ice pops were born.
have you ever tasted buttermilk?
not good, right? and, yet. i can never resist
sampling just a tiny bit, even though i always
regret it. i just can never get over how unpleasant
it tastes. yet by adding just a couple ingredients
to make a dressing or a glaze, or now, ice pops,
it's harshness turns into tangy deliciousness.
and for these,
it really is only a couple of ingredients:
sugar and salt.
you freeze and
but, i'll be honest with you
about one thing that's not
so much fun:
then, you wait.
for at least four hours.
or, if you're like us,
you wait for three days,
because well, you are really
tired and dessert is the last thing
on your mind once you start commuting.
but when you finally take a lick,
or a bite, if that's how you roll,
i think you'll find they were worth
the wait: tangy, tart, sweet and,
yes, icy. for an ice pop, they feel indulgent,
but they're not so bad as these
things go. and, they're bordering on
mysterious. larry guessed sour cream,
cardamom and many other things
before i told him buttermilk and lime.
and, now, i think i'm up for pops
that might take a little more work.
but, it's important to say that when
i made these, i hardly felt like a slacker.
buttermilk lime ice pops
adapted from bon appetit magazine
i have a confession: i have no idea what size molds i bought. and i thought they were big, but after using them once, i'm now thinking they're normal. so when i was making this recipe, i doubled it, but it was probably unnecessary, considering i had a ton left over. my mold makes six, this recipe originally called for eight 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup capacity molds. as for the lime zest - i learned after several botched attempts at perfectly distributing orange zest in the olive oil pound cake that it's best to take a minute and use your fingers to separate, before adding zest to your liquids. otherwise, they clump up around the whisk, or just settle into lumps into the final product.
3-4 juicy limes
3/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 2/3 cups buttermilk
zest enough limes to measure 2 tablespoons (this took me two limes). juice enough limes to measure 1/3 cup lime juice.
in 4-cup measuring cup or bowl with pour spout, whisk together sugar, lime juice, lime peel and satl. whisk in buttermilk. divide mixture among ice pop molds, leaving 1/4 inch space on top. add tops; cover and freeze 4 hours, or until firm.