Bon Appétit (June 2011)
Let's play a round of the Pyramid.
"Sending your child off to college!"
"Terms of Endearment!"
"The Verve's 'Symphony!'"
"These Campari-Orange Pops!!!"
If you're jumping up and down screaming "THINGS THAT ARE BITTERSWEET!!!", then you just won the grand prize!
Seriously, these ice pops are fantastic. And we can't think of a single thing that better defines the concept of "bittersweet."
To be honest, we are a little split on Campari, the ruby-colored Italian apéritif. Zach loves its bracing bitterness, but Clay finds the bitterness overwhelming and off-putting (although lately he's slowly been coming around to it). These pops are sweetened by sugar and brightened by citrus, but your opinion of them will still pretty much come down to whether or not you enjoy Campari.
If you have a set of popsicle molds, making these frozen pops will be a breeze. We happen to have a set of six molds that were a birthday gift from a friend many years ago. But if you don't have molds and are reluctant to buy a set (which is totally understandable), you can improvise molds using small paper cups and wooden sticks. You could do the same thing with muffin tins (though they would make for an oddly shaped frozen pop).
Another twist on this if you don't have molds: Pour the liquid into a rimmed baking sheet or a shallow casserole dish. Freeze it, then scrape it up with a fork and pile it into bowls or wine glasses. Voila! Campari-Orange Granita!
Anyway, we think these pops are a solid hit. Of course they're an icy, refreshing treat on a hot summer day. But the bitterness somehow amps up the refreshment ratio. (Even Clay agrees.) Playing the bitter against the sweet makes the ice pops so much more refreshing than if they were just purely sweet.
Bitter and sweet. Turns out, each one makes the other better. You need the bitter to appreciate the sweet. Just ask Sally Field.
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 3/4 cups fresh orange juice
- 1/3 cup Campari
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- Bring sugar and 1/2 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Transfer syrup to a medium pitcher; chill until cold, about 1 hour.
- Stir all remaining ingredients into syrup. Divide among molds. Cover; insert ice-pop sticks. Freeze until firm. Dip bottoms of molds into hot water for 20-30 seconds to loosen pops. Remove pops from molds and serve.