It’s (just about) officially summer, and I don’t know about you, but I definitely love my Popsicles when it’s so stinking hot outside. Heat and me? We don’t get along well, so anything that will cool me down is great in my book, but if it’s sweet? Just a bonus!
So, continuing on the New Mexican theme, these horchata Popsicles are absolutely perfect for really hot summer afternoons and evenings. The only issue is that there is a bit of a wait, first for the horchata (it needs to sit overnight if you’re making it from scratch) and then another wait for the Popsicles to freeze. It’s completely worth the wait, though!
If you’ve never had horchata, it’s a sweet, creamy Mexican (and New Mexican) treat made with rice milk, almonds, cinnamon, and some kind of sweetener. My husband grew up drinking it and it’s really so refreshing served ice cold. Which is why as a Popsicle it’s a creamy, dreamy summertime treat with a nice touch of cinnamon!
As far as molds go, you can really use anything. I bought the mold for these Popsicles at Williams Sonoma last year, but your manner of Popsicle is completely up to you! (By the way, did you know that Popsicle is actually supposed to be capitalized? It’s not a generic word—it’s actually trademarked word. Even as a writer, I had no idea…).
As for the recipe, I based it off of this recipe from Nosh On.It because I didn’t have one of my own. Also, full disclosure, I did not make the recipe completely from scratch. My spice grinder is broken and I just don’t have money to get another one. My solution was to buy rice milk. I also added some almond/coconut milk creamer to make the recipe thicker to help ensure the Popsicles wouldn’t be too watery. I also made the sweetener optional because, as I tested one batch, I realized I had completely forgotten to add the honey and yet, they were sweet enough without! However, I don’t like anything super sweet, so I’m not a great judge. Thus, honey is optional.
Finally, the recipe calls for straining the recipe through cheese cloth. I would really go for cheesecloth versus straining it through another type of strainer or even a fine-meshed tea strainer. I tried it both ways and the cheesecloth was the only way to get the really fine particles out of the mixture.
- 1 cup almonds, skin removed
- 1 cinnamon stick or 3 Tbsp. cinnamon
- 2 cups rice milk
- 1 cup of warm water
- ¼ C. almond milk/coconut milk creamer (or creamer of choice)
- 3 Tbsp. runny honey (optional)
- Cheese Cloth
- Blanch the almonds by blanching them in boiling water for a minute, then rinsing them immediately under cold water (you can also dump them into a bowl of prepared ice water). Pinch each almond between two fingers and they should slip right out of their skin (fun, huh?).
- Cook the almonds in a dry skillet over medium heat, moving them continuously, until they’re lightly toasted.
- Pour the almonds, the rice milk, the cinnamon, creamer, and 1 cup of hot water into a large jar or bowl. Let cool to room temperature and then put into the refrigerator to soak overnight (at least 10 hours).
- Pour all of the contents of the bowl into a blender and blend on high speed until it’s completely blended and smooth.
- Drape cheesecloth over a pitcher or large measuring cup and strain the mixture.
- Pour into Popsicle molds and freeze for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
‘Till next time!