Ice Pops Reinvented

lek1489
June 29, 2017

 

Growing up I spent many 4th of July holidays in the Poconos at overnight camp (some may refer to this as sleep away camp). The 4th of July holiday was always a special event with high expectations for the evening fireworks display. Just before the fireworks would begin I distinctly remember the distribution of ice pops. There was something very thrilling when opening the wrapper to unveil the red white and blue themed treat. Perhaps my joy was the result of limited sweets but I personally think Ice Pops aka popsicles are a summer staple. The simplicity of this treat has been revolutionized and I wanted to share some of my favorite homemade recipes. They’re quick and easy and provide a nice refreshing desert. Although I no longer experience the classic fire cracker ice pops of my camping days, there are boundless unique and original recipes.Ice pops are not so simple anymore, with innovative ingredients they have come a long way.

 

I hope this holiday brings back a special memory for you, if so please share!

 

Happy Independence Day!

 

Here is a new twist on a old thought. See below for a recipe on how ice pops have evolved along with some innovative molds!

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Recipe

Orange Banana Smoothie Pop

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 container greek yogurt
  • .67 cup of thawed orange juice concentrate
  • 2 large bananas
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp. of fresh lime juice

 

Directions

  1. Puree one Greek yogurt, thawed orange juice concentrate, bananas, lime zest, and fresh lime juice in a blender.
  2. Pour into six 3-ounce molds. (We used mini baking tins with Popsicle sticks, but you can also substitute paper cups.) Freeze until smoothie pops are solid, about 4 hours.
  3. To release pops, dip molds into hot water until pops loosen and slide out. If using cups, peel away paper.

 

 

Sur La Table Pop Molds

 

 

 

William Sonoma Mod Pop Mold

Memorial Day Viewpoints

lek1489
May 28, 2017

Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Memorial Day has come to be associated with the beginning of summer. It is not however just an opportunity for a barbecue or beach trip but rather a day to honor American soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

 

During my Junior year of college I spent a semester abroad in Tel Aviv, Israel. While studying abroad I received a unique experience in a country both culturally and spiritually. My stay in Israel overlapped with several holidays observed there, Memorial Day and Independence Day. I returned to the United States with a new respect for our observance of Memorial Day.

 

Tel Aviv, Israel

 

In Israel, the government established a Memorial Day for those who lost their lives in the struggle that led to the establishment of the State of Israel and for all military personnel who were killed while in active duty in Israel’s armed forces. It is a national day of public mourning and quite solemn. The following day Independence Day is observed. This is a day of enthusiastic celebration just as we have our Independence day on July 4th. The back to back adherence of these two days is quite unique and contrasting.

 

I am reminded as Memorial Day approaches how important it is to take a minute to reflect on all those who have bravely given their lives to defend our freedom and safety. Not only does this day remind me of how fortunate we are to have our freedom, it will always bring back my memories of the somber observance of Memorial Day in another country.

 

The holiday weekend for many is a kick off time of summer. Let’s not forget the true reason the holiday exists. So this year as you enjoy a day off, begin the barbecue season, go to the beach, shopping or amusement park, take a moment to reflect on all who have given their lives for our country to maintain the freedom we are so fortunate to enjoy.

 

Israeli salad became staple of mine while living in Israel. Below is a recipe I have come to rely on and continues to bring back memories of an amazing cultural and cultural since returning and helps bring back memories of an amazing cultural and culinary experience.

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Israeli Salad

Serves 4-6

Israeli salad is a chopped salad of finely diced tomato, onion, cucumber and bell peppers.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium or 6 small Israeli cucumbers, chopped small
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped small
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon (2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice)

 

Instructions

  1. Finely chop the cucumbers tomatoes and onions and combine in a bowl
  2. Add juice of lemon, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste
  3. Mix together all ingredients and enjoy!

 

 

My Aprons

lek1489
May 8, 2017

In honor of Mothers Day this is dedicated to all those who have influenced you in the kitchen with a special memory…

 

I always loved aprons.

 

My first memories of cooking with my grandmother always included wearing my very own apron. Our grandmother made us our first aprons and as we grew she made us bigger ones. There was an unwritten rule, when you cook or bake, wear your apron. Sure the aprons protected our clothes but there was more to it.

 

I never thought much about it when I was little. I loved to play dress up, and I felt as though I was playing dress up in order to be allowed to bake. As I got older I realized my mother always wore aprons, which she learned from her mother. If we began to cook or bake, her first words were always, “Let’s get our aprons on.”

 

When I got my first apartment during college, carefully packed among my kitchen and cooking supplies, my mother had included an apron.  There was a kitchen so it went without saying I would need an apron. As I started cooking on my own, I began paying more attention to aprons. I knew their function was important but suddenly I realized they were their own fashion statement. I still have my very first aprons and I continued to add to my assortment as time went on. Each one brings back memories of special times in the kitchen.

 

As I reflect, I know the aprons protected our clothes from getting dirty but there was more to it.  Putting on the apron was part of the fun of the cooking adventure. Having my own unique apron made just for me, allowed me to feel extra special and gave me the confidence that I knew what I was doing. Nothing would turn out bad when I was wearing my apron with my grandma, my mother, and sister by my side.  Those aprons were full of love and contributed to  my confidence.

 

 

My first aprons sewn by my Grandmother

 

So get yourself an apron, make a fashion statement and success with your next cooking endeavor is awaiting. You’ll spare yourself some excess laundry bills as well!

 

Here are some aprons I am currently loving. Do you have a cooking memory? Would love to hear about it, please share below!

 

 

Anthropologie Apron

Sur La Table

Target Apron

Bed Bath & Beyond