Friday, May 18, 2012

Pineapple, Mint & Serrano Paletas Mexicanas (Mexican Fruit Pops): Sweet and Cool Ice Pops with a Kick

Nothing cools down and satisfies like a paleta or frozen fresh fruit pop on a warm day. There has been a fair amount of humidity here lately and I was craving some icy goodness. My favorite paletas come from OnoPops, an Oahu company that combines local fruit and ingredients into unique and delicious combinations. One of my favorite OnoPops variations is the Mango-Habanero which has just the right amount of spicy kick in a sweet and fruity base. It was my inspiration for these Pineapple, Mint & Serrano Paletas, adapted from the Paletas Mexicanas recipe from Salsas That Cook by Rick Bayless. 

(My changes/adaptations to the recipe are in red below.)

Rick says, "On warm days all throughout the neighborhood, I can hear the jingling bells of paletero signaling to all of us the arrival of his sweet frozen fruit on sticks--from guanabana and papaya to coconut and tamarind."

Pineapple, Mint & Serrano Paletas Mexicanas (Mexican Fruit Pops)
Adapted from Salsas That Cook by Rick Bayless
(Makes Eight 2-oz Pops)

scant 2 cups coarsely pureed, peeled & pitted fruit* (I used fresh local pineapple)
(2 Tbsp coarsely chopped mint leaves)
(1/2 serrano pepper, seeded)
1/2 to 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice (I used 1 1/2 Tbsp)
superfine sugar to taste, optional (I didn't use any sugar)

*Note: Rick says, "For really thick purees, like mango, you'll probably want to use 1 1/2 cups fruit and 1/2 cup water, with looser purees, I wouldn't add any water."

(Puree pineapple, mint and serrano chile in blender until smooth.)

Combine pureed fruit with the minimum quantities of sugar and lime in a 1-quart measuring cup with a spout. Taste and determine what your fruit needs. (Remember, when the mixture is frozen, flavors will be slightly muted; go for slightly sweeter and slightly tarter than you'd normally like. Stir the mixture until the sugar has dissolved completely. Fill your molds, leaving about 1/4-inch headspace to allow for expansion, set the lids in place.

Freeze until firmly set (this should take a couple of hours, though feel free to make them several days ahead if that's more convenient). Remove pops from molds (if necessary,  rinsing molds briefly under hot water first). The pops look festive and fun displayed in a chilled bowl, all the sticks poking up. 

Notes/Results: Oh these are GOOD! (If I do say so myself) ;-) The sweet juicy pineapple is the star, but the lime adds a tangy bright burst of flavor that combines well with the cooling mint. The serrano is just enough to let you know it is there and leave a bit of heat in the mouth. You could add more if you like the burn or take it out for kids. My Maui Gold pineapple was so sweet I didn't feel that it needed extra sugar at all, making it a very healthy and guilt-free snack or dessert.

We are celebrating the color Yellow this week at I Heart Cooking Clubs. You can check out the golden-hued Rick Bayless dishes that everyone created by following the links.

Happy Aloha Friday!


  1. I'm so happy that it's paleta season again! This flavor looks so refreshing...I love that hint of spice!

  2. Natashya Kitchen PuppiesMay 18, 2012 at 4:01 AM

    Wonderful! And such great pictures too. When I come to Hawaii I expect to be greeted with these delicious pops. 

  3. Great choice, Deb!  These flavors sound so good and refreshing.  I'm definitely interested in the serrano pepper .  Fun!

  4. Love these! Nice flavors and the pops are cute :)

  5. Couscous & ConsciousnessMay 18, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    Gorgeous - I love this combination of flavours and what's not to love about a guilt-free dessert.  I haven't managed to catch up with Rick Bayless yet, but hope to get there soon.

  6. Wow, Beautiful and so refreshingly delicious! I don't mind having this everyday! With serrano, oh my!

  7. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous pops!  I love their bright sunny color and the hint of mint and serrano.  Also nice that you didn't have to add any sugar.  Guess that means you could have a few without feeling bad.

  8. Thx for connecting with me on foodbuzz. I just subscribed to your blog feed and can't wait to see what your next post will be!

  9. Yvette MwcadventureMay 20, 2012 at 7:02 AM

    Pineapple, mint with serrano that sounds amazing! Great adaptation of the recipe.


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