My youngest daughter turned five last week, and for a while, I struggled with what to get my new kindergartner. She has an older sister, and therefore, many hand-me-down toys and enough dolls to last a lifetime.
After trying the “five-minute popsicles” for dessert recently at the new Peachtree Corners restaurant, TEN Bistro, I was intrigued and in search of the gadget that made such a feat possible. My daughter is a girl who loves treats, so I knew a popsicle maker would make for a perfect gift (for the whole family!).
I found my way into the Williams Sonoma store at The Forum, and wholla, a funky gadget, with an even funkier name, Zoku, found its way into my shopping bag.
The concept is simple. Freeze the block-like device for 24 hours. Add chilled liquid into the molds (my Zoku has two molds and will freeze up to six popsicles; a three mold Zoku is also available that is more expensive).
In less than 10 minutes tops, we made delicious homemade treats, minus all the preservatives, high fructose corn syrup or other artificial or chemical additives.
Nutrition meets indulgence meets simplicity. I like it.
I was pleasantly surprised with how effortless this product was to use and how quickly the popsicles were ready to eat. At $39, a Zoku would make a praiseworthy gift for anyone. I mean, c’mon, who doesn’t like popsicles?
The basic formula for a popsicle:
- 1 cup non-fat yogurt (I used non-fat Greek yogurt for the protein boost)
- 1 cup fruit (I used 2 handfuls of frozen blueberries)
- 1/3 cup honey (you could also use maple syrup, agave, or some suguar)
- I added 1 tsp fresh grated ginger (gave it a nice zing) and some ground flax seeds for the health benefits.
Puree all ingredients in a blender and pour into the mold. Wait seven minutes. Pull out and enjoy.
Since I didn’t want to spring another $16 for the “Zoku Popsicle Cookbook,” I posted on my Facebook page asking for help with recipes. Of course, you can freeze straight juice (orange, grape, etc.), however, I was looking for out-of-the-box ideas, and my friends delivered.
Pineapple Cilantro Popsicles
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1 cup frozen pineapple
- a handful of cilantro
- 2-3 TBSP shredded coconut
For an adult version, add a little rum.
Strawberry Basil Popsicles
- 2 cups strawberries
- handful of basil
- 3 tsp lemon juice
- 2 TBSP honey
- 1 tsp water
You can also layer the ingredients or add thinly sliced fruit for a gourmet look.
Coffee Buzzzzzz (yes, I made this up myself)
- 1 cup strong coffee, chilled
- 1 cup Greek Yogurt
- ¼ cup honey
- Coffee beans
Blend together and then drop a few coffee beans into the mold. Yum. I may get a little wild and add some Kahlua or Baileys next time!