A Chicken in Every Crockpot!

Karen's Kitchen Adventures

Minted Watermelon and Lemon Ice Pops! July 30, 2010

Filed under: dessert — frappqueen @ 11:15 am
Tags: ,

Oh man, these ice pops take some time to prepare (well, you have to wait for stuff to cool and set up, so it takes a few hours of waiting, but not too much time of actual WORK), but holy moly, they are worth every second of it! The last time I made them, Mike and I ate all 10 in about three days! We couldn’t help ourselves! They are so full of flavor and deliciousness, you can not control yourself! Besides, they came out of the June 2010 issue of Cooking Light magazine, and are made with real fruit, so seriously, how bad can they be for you? right?! …right???

Minted Watermelon and Lemon Ice Pops

Watermelon layer:
1/4  cup  sugar
1/4  cup  water
1/4  cup  coarsely chopped fresh mint
2  cups  packed (1/2-inch) cubed seeded watermelon
1  tablespoon  fresh lime juice

Lemon layer:
6  tablespoons  sugar
1/2  cup  water
2/3  cup  fresh lemon juice
1/3  cup  fresh orange juice
1/4  teaspoon  orange extract

Method:

To prepare watermelon layer, combine 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil; cook 30 seconds, stirring until sugar dissolves. Stir in mint; cover and let stand 30 minutes. IMPORTANT: Do not mis-read this as let stand 30 SECONDS as I did the first time…that results in still delicious pops, but a total waste of the mint that you spent all morning hunting down!

Strain through a sieve into a bowl. (I just picked out the mint, how many friggin sieves do these people think I own?!)

Place watermelon in a blender; process until smooth. Strain puree through a sieve into bowl with mint syrup; press with back of a spoon to extract juice. Discard solids. Stir in lime juice; cover and chill 1 hour.

Pour about 2 1/2 tablespoons watermelon mixture into each of 8 ice pop molds. Freeze 1 1/2 hours or until almost set. Arrange 1 wooden stick into mixture, being careful not to push through to bottom of mold. Return to freezer. Freeze 1 hour or until frozen.

To prepare lemon layer, combine 6 tablespoons sugar and 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil; cook 30 seconds, stirring until sugar dissolves. Pour into a bowl; stir in lemon juice, orange juice, and extract. Cool 15 minutes; cover and chill at least 1 hour.

Remove molds from freezer. Pour about 3 tablespoons lemon mixture over frozen watermelon mixture in each mold. Freeze 2 hours or until completely frozen.

Note: If you have those really cool popsicle sets from like the 80’s where the sticks are part of the lid and you don’t think you can add the sticks and then take them out to make layers, I say no worries…just swirl both bowls together and pour them in! You will just have some nice watermelony/lemon pops instead of a layer of each flavor!

 

Blubbery Muffins!! June 6, 2010

Filed under: baking,breads,breakfast — frappqueen @ 10:54 am
Tags: , , ,

Okay, so they are Blueberry muffins, but Mike and I have a secret: we really really like the kid’s tv show ICarly. I know, its a show for 8 year olds, but have you seen it? It is hysterical! At any rate, one episode they get lots of cash for selling faulty sneakers and Sam hires a chef who makes Blueberry Muffins for her everyday, but calls them Blubbery, cuz she has an accent and…okay, well, maybe you had to be there, but whatever, that’s what we call them now too!!

In my 10th week of pregnancy or so (I’m almost up to week 17, whoo hoo!) I began craving, NEEDING blueberry muffins. I wanted homemade ones though, not crap from Dunkin Donuts! No sir! Also, I was finally feeling well enough to stomach cooking, so I was in dire need of baking!! I found this recipe via our dear friend Martha S. and it is divine. In fact, I think I have baked them about 4 times since! The muffins taste best the day you make them, but keep decently well in a plastic bag all week. I often bake a batch on Sunday and then eat one every morning around 10am for my second breakfast. I eat every hour these days, what can I say?! Give them a try, they are surprisingly easy, healthy, and awesome!

Blueberry Muffins (from Martha Stewart)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan *
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups fresh blueberries
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Method:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously butter a standard 12-cup muffin pan and dust with flour, tapping out excess; set aside*. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Working over the bowl, toss blueberries in a fine sieve with about 1 1/2 teaspoons flour mixture to lightly coat; set aside the flour mixture and the blueberries.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a handheld mixer, beat butter and 1 cup sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined. Mix in vanilla.

With the mixer on low speed, add reserved flour mixture, beating until just combined. Add milk, beating until just combined. Do not overmix. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the blueberries. Divide batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups. If desired, in a small bowl, mix together remaining 1/4 cup sugar and nutmeg. Sprinkle sugar mixture on top of muffin batter.

Bake, rotating pan halfway though, until muffins are golden brown and a cake tester inserted in the center of one muffin comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool 10 minutes. Turn muffins on their sides in their cups, and let cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.

* I am always afraid to just bake stuff right in the muffin tin, so I didn’t. Instead of buttering the tins, I just used good ol’ paper liners. Works every time!