Beat the heat this summer with these cocktails on a stick.
Makes 6 pops
• 2 ½ c. chopped cucumber
• 1 c. elderflower cordial
• ½ c. gin
Place the cucumber and elderflower cordial in a food processor or blender and blitz until smooth. Pass the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl and stir half of the pulp in the sieve back into the cucumber and elderflower juice. Mix in the gin until well combined, then pour into six frozen ice pop molds. Place the molds in the freezer. Let set for 3 hours, give it a good stir, insert the sticks and allow to freeze solid (about 4 more hours) or leave overnight.
Per pop: 160 calories (10 percent from fat).
POMEGRANATE, VANILLA AND VODKA
Makes 4 pops
• ½ vanilla bean
• ¼ c. super-fine sugar
• 1 ½ c. pomegranate juice
• 4 tbsp. vodka
Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and place pod and seeds in a saucepan with the sugar and ½ cup water. Slowly bring to a boil, allowing the sugar to dissolve. Let simmer gently for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat. Allow to infuse for 30 minutes. Remove the vanilla pod from the syrup and mix in the pomegranate juice and vodka. Pour into four frozen ice pop molds. Place the molds in the freezer. Let set for 2 hours, insert the sticks and allow to freeze until completely solid (about 4 more hours).
Per pop: 135 calories (1 percent from fat).
ENGLISH SUMMER CUP
Makes 6 pops
• ¼ c. superfine sugar
• 4 tbsp. Pimm's gin-based liquor
• 1 c. ginger beer (or lemonade)
• ¼ c. sliced strawberries
• ¼ c. sliced apples
• 18 small mint leaves
Place the sugar and ½ cup water in a saucepan and slowly bring to a boil, allowing the sugar to dissolve. Let simmer gently for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat. Add the Pimm's and ginger beer or lemonade. Let cool completely. Divide the strawberries, apple slices and mint leaves among six frozen ice pop molds. Pour over the Pimm's mixture and insert the sticks. Place molds in the freezer for 6 hours, until frozen solid.
Per pop: 76 calories (1 percent from fat).
Makes 6 slushes
• ½ c. super-fine sugar
• Grated zest of 1 lime
• ⅓ c. lime juice (3 to 4 limes)
• 2 c. chopped watermelon
• 6 tbsp. tequila
• 2 tbsp. Grand Marnier
• 2 tbsp. agave nectar
Put the sugar and lime zest in a saucepan with 1 cup water. Place over low heat. Gently bring to a simmer, allowing the sugar to dissolve. Let bubble gently for 5 minutes, remove from the heat and pour in the lime juice. Place the chopped watermelon in a food processor or blender, add the lime syrup, tequila, Grand Marnier and agave nectar and blitz until well combined. Pour into a freezer-safe container, cover, and place in the freezer for up to 6 hours, giving it a good stir every 2 hours. Remove from the freezer, blitz in a food processor or blender, and pour into glasses. Allow to thaw a little (approximately 10 minutes), then serve.
Per slush: 136 calories (2 percent from fat).
Makes 6 pops
• 2 tbsp. honey
• 4 tbsp. whiskey
• 2 c. ginger beer
Put the honey and whiskey into a bowl and, using a small whisk, mix together until well combined. Gradually whisk in the ginger beer, making sure that everything is thoroughly blended. Pour into six ice pop molds and place in the freezer. After 2 hours, give each one a good stir. Freeze for another 2 hours, stir and insert the sticks. Return to the freezer and freeze for another 2 hours, until completely solid.
Per pop: 76 calories (none from fat).