Popsicles Obsession in Singapore

Perfect Popsicles on Singapore’s Sunny Shores!

Image by Jennifer Chait

Popsicles have come screaming back into our lives and now, they’re meant for adults. It’s as though life has come a full circle – I remember being a child and rushing to the local mama shop after school to purchase a 10cents ice pop (which was really frozen, artificially coloured and flavoured water) and sucking on it until my tongue turned purple, pink or blue. Little did I know that more than a decade later, I’d be writing on ice pops and developing ice pop recipes for parties, no less.

Today, ice pops are sweeping the world and increasingly Singapore, with a more grown up, natural and healthier version (with a slightly more complicated, or simpler, recipe. It really depends on how you want to look at it). OK, I am not so sure about the healthier part, as ice pops can be made using delicious double cream and caramel and sinful chocolate – got your attention yet? At least it’s not artificial, thank the freezer.

I came across a book on ice pops in the library a while ago and it made a fairly interesting read – it was written by this artist who started experimenting with freezing juices and slowly expanded her repertoire to include delectable frozen popsicles that reprieved dozens of people on a hot summers’ day in New York. I didn’t quite see the relevance in Singapore – until a few months later when I came across a recipe online for butterscotch pudding. After that, I went back to library to borrow the book and try some of the recipes. Here’s what I’ve found:

  1. Ice pops are no longer just frozen, coloured water. They come in a WIDE range of flavour combinations and the sky is the limit once you start experimenting with them. You will be creating your own ice pop recipes before you know it.
  2. Given the Singaporean heat (which is not unbearable thanks to the Haze, but hey, all in a day’s …), Ice Pops are the perfect way to unwind while catching up on your favourite show at night.
  3. All Ice Pop Recipes call for more sugar than is needed if you’re making the ice pop to be served as a drink, smoothie, frozen dessert or all three! This is pretty simple to understand – frozen foods naturally lack flavour, so a food item that is tooth achingly sweet at room temperature may just be sweet enough t when right out of the deep freeze.
  4. EVERYONE loves them. Try out the recipes (link 3) on Cravings (they are so idiot proof I can’t even tell you) and serve them at your next dinner party, or transport them as a gift for a friend’s house party. You’re sure to pop up (pun completely and unashamedly intended) on the guest list for the next house party.

In my (humble, well not so) opinion, ice pops have not quite made the descent in Singapore like bubble tea did at one point. I suppose ice pops are a part of a very hipster culture. But we do have other tantalizing alternatives, such as ice shaved in a bowl with a world of flavours, or the classic ice kachang. There’s a place on Prinsep Street (Burlington Square) that serves up frozen (yogurt –based) ice popsicles alongside fro-yos though, known as Yogart (link 1). And they come in a myriad of flavours too. I love the ones with the fruits – fruits and yogurts frozen and devoured, there’s no better way to battle the sun in my opinion.

So given the lack of ice pops in Singapore, I decided to come up with my own recipes. These reflect the need the quick ice pop fixes as well, so you can forget about having to move things from the stove to the counter to cool then to the freezer to solidify. We’re so over that!

Have you seen ice pops in and around Singapore? Let me know, I’d love to share your suggestions here!

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