Boozy Paletas

August.

Aug-ust. The way the word rolls around in your mouth almost makes you feel sticky hot air on your skin. Auuuugust. So lazy, so hot, you can’t be bothered to close your mouth fast enough on that first vowel sound. This must be why Southern accents are so lugubrious — they’re just trying to breathe in as much air as possible while talking through summer’s oppressive humidity.

In August, all you want to do is be cool. Ice cool. You want to walk into a movie theatre with the air conditioning blasting so intensely that goosebumps appear on your still-muggy skin. You want to jump into the Pacific Ocean, shudder a bit at the initial temperature, and then slowly acclimate to the water as the sun shines above you. You want to see rivers of condensation on whatever beverage you’ve decided to rehydrate with — the more frosted the glass, the better.

And, even if you’re not typically a sweets fan, you want to eat ice cream. And shaved ice. And gelato. Basically anything that tastes good frozen you’re in for.

We get it. And since summer is lazy — and August is the laziest! — we’re killing two birds with one stone and marrying happy hour cocktails with frozen desserts. Enter the paleta: the modern chef’s answer to boozy popsicles.

Chef Kelly Cook (best last name for a foodie, right?) schooled us in all things paletas, which are basically popsicles with a twist. Traditionally found in Mexico and other Latin countries, paletas are made with more unique flavor profiles than traditional fruit-based popsicles. Chef Kelly’s recipes recall the refreshing flavor of street paletas, with a nod to traditional summer cocktail flavors. “I think these limoncello pops are a beautiful addition to any party,” she explains. “I love the combination of bright colors with the mint and lemon slices.”

We couldn’t agree more. Keep scrolling for two options that are bound to wow any summer BBQ crowd.

LIMONCELLO POPS INGREDIENTS

1 cup Water

¾ cup Sugar

1 cup Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice

⅔ cup Limoncello

Zest of 2 Lemons

Pinch of Salt

10-12 Large Mint Leaves

LIMONCELLO POPS ASSEMBLY

1 | Heat the water and sugar on the stovetop (or in the microwave) until the sugar dissolves.

2 | Pour hot water into a pitcher along with the lemon juice, limoncello, lemon zest, and salt. Stir well.

3 | Pour the limoncello mixture into 10-12 popsicle molds, sliding one large mint leaf down into each popsicle mold.

4 | Place the lid on the mold trays, and slide popsicle sticks down into the lid slots.

5 | Freeze for 4+ hours until solid.

6 | Flip the molds over and run under warm water to release the popsicles.

*Makes about 10 pops.

COCONUT MANGO POPSICLES INGREDIENTS

1½ cup Unsweetened Coconut Milk

1 cup Plain Greek Yogurt

3 tablespoons Sugar

⅔ cup Coconut Rum

1½ cup Mango, pureed (approximately 2 large Mangos)

COCONUT MANGO POPSICLES ASSEMBLY

1 | In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, Greek yogurt, and sugar until combined.

2 | Add the coconut rum, and mix well.

3 | Pour the coconut milk mixture into the popsicle molds, and fill about half-way. Add a spoonful or two of the pureed mango to each popsicle, and top with a small remaining splash of the mixture.

4 | If you’d like, use a knife or skewer to swirl the mango throughout the popsicle mold for even distribution.

5 | Once the molds are filled, add the popsicle sticks and place in your freezer for at least 2 hours, or until completely set.

6 | To remove popsicles, run warm water over the mold and pull gently, wiggling the stick from side to side.

*Makes about 10 pops.

Michelle Pellizzon is a creative consultant based in Los Angeles. A former professional dancer-turned-startup employee, she’s led a strange but wonderful creative life. Follow along for her latest projects and mishaps at @betterbymichelle, and connect with wellness practitioners at her company, @holisticism.

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