Saturday, June 18, 2011

Watermelon Pops

Oh the joys of summer! The HEAT, the swimming, the HEAT, the vacations, the HEAT, the games & family time, and finally the HEAT. Can you tell we live in the desert? As fabulous as the summer is, the most prevalent thing about April - October in our area is that it is HOT, HOTTER, & HOTTEST!  Cool treats are so important in helping get through these blazing months.  Have you seen how much they are charging these days for the frozen, artificially colored sugar water in the freezer section of your local grocery store? If you are looking for healthier options that include a recognizable ingredient (like fruit, for example) the cost multiplies! In the past, we have used a lot of "Otter Pops" to help endure the inferno, but this year we started looking for better choices. Our first endeavor? Watermelon Pops. AMAZING!
Thanks to a friend, fellow blogger, and chef we decided to try out these gems and they will remain a staple in our freezers all summer.
Aside from being tasty & refreshing (& they ARE!) they are 1. very healthy, 2. very inexpensive, and 3. our families approve (ok, so admittedly it's the kids you were wondering about - testimonials to follow).

Supplies needed: seedless watermelon, popsicle or craft sticks (we got ours at Walmart in the craft section - the bigger size like you see at the Dr's office work great), a big knife, a cutting board, a cookie sheet, plastic wrap (optional) 

Step 1: Cut a small disk off the top and bottom
of the watermelon, creating a flat surface. 
This helps stabilize the watermelon while you cut off the rind.

Step 2: Slice off the rind in long strips

Isn't it pretty? Kind of reminds me of a big lovely gemstone.

Step 3: Cut the melon into slabs as thick as you want your popsicles

Step 4: Cut slabs into popsicle sizes and slide the sticks into place

Place your finished pops on a cookie sheet lined with plastic wrap and
pop into the freezer. After they are frozen place them in a big ziploc bag & enjoy!

"We approve this message"

Feedback from the 4 yr old when told to stay in the kitchen to enjoy the pop:
"I don't need to! These don't drip all over or fall off the stick!"
Feedback from the youngest was based on his actions

Cost breakdown: Watermelon - 4 melons at $1 each (Sprout's special)= $4, popsicle sticks= $2.29
Because we only had 75 sticks, we only made 75 pops and ate the leftover melon. The cost ended up at 8.4 cents a popsicle. So, if you compare that to a twelve count store bought version, the cost per box would be $1.01 - Pretty amazing, huh?  Even if you don't find watermelon on special, the cost is still fabulous, then add that to the healthiness (is that a word?) and you've got a winner!

Suggestion: try other melons like honeydew, cantaloupe, or crenshaw. The kids will still have color choices! :)