Chocolate Mousse Popsicles...

With summer fast approaching and temperatures spiking up into the 90's (eek... it feels too early), it's time for some cooling off.  I have to tell you, since I have been married, I have NEVER had an air conditioner... and we live in a desert.  Go figure.  For some reason there always seems to be something more important, or necessary, to do with the air conditioner fund.  Every house we have lived in has had huge mature trees on the South-West side, making cool air "a luxury", not a necessity.  I even had a baby in July during a summer heat wave.  The day he was born, it was a cool 105ºF, at least the hospital had air conditioning.  I had been sweating like a mama pig for weeks...  all these sweaty memories keep popping into my mind.  BUT this year is different, my hot farm hand hubby worked a deal and... (drum roll, please) ...WE HAVE CENTRAL AIR!  In celebration of my coolness (meaning flowing cool air swirling around me, too much of a plant nerd for the other coolness), I am making popsicles!

This is a blast from my past, probably a 1960's recipe.  My mom used to make these for us throughout the summer.  They were kind of a special treat growing up, and they always put a smile on our faces.  These are super simple, the most elaborate piece of equipment you need is a hand blender and popsicle molds, but, hey, you can use yogurt cups and wooden sticks if you don't have molds.  It requires a little beating, a little folding, a super chill and, yay, creamy chocolate popsicles.

backyard farmgals

1 package chocolate pudding, prepared according to package directions and cooled (I use the organic Dr. Oetker, you can get it at health food stores, but Jell-O works fine too.)
1 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks and chilled

 **Note - if you want a different flavor of popsicle, just change your pudding mix.  Banana is yummy and you can add some small banana chunks.  Pistachio is good too, add a little layer of chopped pistachios to the top of the mold before you put in the sticks (they will be on the bottom of the popsicle when you pull them out).  

Put the prepared pudding in a large bowl.  Gently add the cream on top of the pudding and, with a spatula, begin to lightly fold the whipped cream into the pudding.  This takes a minute, don't loose your patience and start stirring.  Sing like Dori on Finding Nemo, "just keep folding, just keep folding..."

When the mixture is thoroughly combined, gently fill the popsicle molds, leaving about 1/2-inch of room at the top of the mold.  Tap the molds or use a skewer to remove air bubbles.  Add the sticks to the molds, and place in the freezer until firm, about 4 hours.  I whip up a batch of these in the morning and they are ready for the kids' play dates in the afternoon.

To unmold, run the mold under hot water and gently loosen and pull the popsicle out of the mold.


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