Lemon Chili Popsicles ( A Blast from the Past )
Imagine the plight of a bunch of school kids being held to ransom ( for knowledge, no ulterior motives detected here ) behind the huge wrought iron gates of a convent on the blazing summer days. The interiors of the classrooms being no better than the fiery blast furnaces that the city is known for. We would wait eagerly for the last bell to go off before rushing out to descend on the lone ice-cream vendor stationed outside the gate. That too for the ice lollies which were available in just 1 flavor and about three to four shades. Talk about being uncomplicated. Orange, beetroot red and yellow, three distinct shades which were sadly identical in taste, but were labelled as different flavors by the wily vendor. Now that my memory cells are all jogged up, I remember that there was a white one too. Milk ice-cream to be precise but which was kept always relegated to the last. Only to be picked when the others ran out. While those lollies did a great job of quenching our parched throats, there were some obvious side effects. The dripping liquid stained the hands, tongue and sometimes even one's cheek. But the worst was when it dripped all the way down to strain our pristine white uniforms and socks. No prizes for guessing the fallout. That could take up another blog post or two if I were to put it in candid details. However with the advent of branded ice-cream parlours, the ice lollies became a thing of the past and I conveniently forgot about them. That is till they re-emerged in a brand new avatar. The dazzling display of colors that stared at me from the pages of a leading daily seemed nothing like the ice lollies that we had relished. Food ! Indeed, it has come a long way.
But then I have come a long way too. 1816 kilometers to be precise. No less. Jokes apart, sitting in the cool confines of my Bangalore flat, I admit struggling to get used to this alien sounding name which kind of interferes with those sepia tinted memories of mine. "What's in a name?", Shakespeare may proclaim. " A bunch of memories and maybe some more too", would have been my reply a new months back. But not any more.
Inhibitions are the single largest factor that get in our way to achieving 'food nirvana'. This realization hit home when I tried out octopus and squid for the first time (of course with a lot of trepidation) and fell in love instantaneously. That led me to create a bucket list of all those wonderful dishes/ingredients that I had been missing for the longest time. And i have been revising it ever since.
So, when I tried my hand at making popsicles, I went all out in my efforts to make it something memorable. And hence the birth of the 'Lemon Chili Popsicles' which also packs the freshness of mint and that subtle flavor of sea salt ( or 'Himalayan pink salt' for the more fastidious folks ). It turned out to be a double delight when my popsicles ran out within 20 mins of making their maiden debut and within another hour, I got a email mentioning 'Sweet and spicy' to be the current #foodventures theme. Now, if you have been following my blog, 'Foodventures' is an exciting venture by my food inspiration Vikas Khanna, and my favorite food and travel writer cum host Vir Sanghvi which promises to change the way we have been looking at food.
For now, check out the recipe for 'Lemon Chili Popsicles' -
Preparation Time - 20 mins ( plus 4-5 hours freezing time )
- 1/2 cup lime juice
- 2/3 cup sugar syrup
- 1 cup water
- a handful of mint leaves
- 3-4 green chilis
- 2-3 pinch sea salt/ Himalayan salt
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