To kick off this months theme, Frozen Treats, I have some boozy roasted strawberry lemonade pops for us. I guess I just could not let go of last month's strawberry theme, but these popsicles really just make sense.
They bring together classic summer drinking. Everyone loves lemonade and why not add strawberries for some color and extra flavor. Then add some vodka and you have real easy summer living happening. Then freeze it all. Its a wonderful thing.
This recipe is actually perfect for this time in Wisconsin;s strawberry season. They won't be around much longer at Wisconsin farmers markets or you have more strawberries in your fridge than you know what to do with.
Like I have mentioned in a previous post, roasting strawberries is great for less than perfectly ripe strawberries (which is common with store bought berries) or too ripe strawberries. You know when they loose some of their firm juicy quality and become less pleasant to eat and will probably go bad within the next day. That is what I'm talking about when I say too ripe.
If you happen to be using local strawberries and they are on the smaller side, I would cut them in halves instead of quarters. When you roast the berries, I strongly recommend using parchment paper. I found that they stuck to tin foil.
While you roast the strawberries, start squeezing your lemons. I think squeezing your own lemons is really worth the effort. I got this amazing lemon squeezer. Amazing. It was so easy. You should get one. You won't regret it.
Heat up some water to add to your freshly squeeze lemon juice, just hot enough to dissolve some honey. Let is cool off before you add the vodka. We wouldn't wanted any of it to evaporate, duh. If you want to make these booze free for youngsters, just replace the vodka with water. No big deal.
You will fill up your popsicle molds, leaving about 1/2-inch at the top. Plop the strawberries on top of the lemonade. Some of them will sink. Some will not. The stawberries will bleed their juices into the lemonade, turning it a pretty red-pink.
Get them in the freezer. Let them chill out for a bit and then get some sticks in them. I opt to use wooden sticks, rather than the plastic things that came with my molds. I think it looks cuter and they are easy to devour.
I hope you give these a try! Maybe for Fourth of July weekend? Probably. I think it also wouldn't hurt to mix up a vodka lemonade and dip you popsicle into it, like a giant flavored ice cube. You know you want to.
Makes 6 popsicles
1 1/2 pints strawberries, quartered
2 teaspoons honey
Zest of one lemon
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
1 3/4 cups warm water
1 tablespoon honey
4 1/2 tablespoons vodka
Popsicle mold (I use this one)
6 wooden popsicle sticks
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss strawberries, honey and lemon zest to coat. Spread strawberries evenly on prepared baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.
- While the strawberries roast, combine warm water, lemon juice and honey, whisking to dissolve the honey. Let cool slightly. Transfer the cooled strawberries to a dish and transfer as much of their juices to the water and lemon juice mixture (I used a spatula to pool the juices together on the parchment paper and poured it into the mixture. It wasn't much). Finally, add the vodka (if you choose not to use vodka, replace it with 1/4 cup water). Prepare you popsicle mold.
- Fill each popsicle mold about 3/4 of the way, with the lemon mixture. Top off each popsicle mold with roasted strawberries.
- Place the molds in the freezer for about an hour (or until firm enough to keep a popsicle stick upright) and then place a popsicle stick in each mold. Freeze for 12 hours before enjoying.