Creamy Vegan Plum-sicles

veganplumsicles_2

We’ve had a nice time lapse since the last episode of the Tofu Tribunal took place. You know, the one where I finally convinced Mike that perhaps, just maybe, he didn’t mind tofu all that much in certain particular situations.  It’s been about nine months since the last time I pulled a stunt like that, which was just enough time for me to lull him into false sense of security, thinking that this testing phase of our relationship was over.  But oh, no, my friend.  A temporary hiatus doth not a dead point make.

My first attempt was with a curried tofu and dill dip. He liked it, until he found out that it was tofu.  Then it was three spits to the wind and on to the next course.  I tried again with a vegetarian version of moussaka, kidney beans and all, using tofu as the base ingredient in our bechamel.  He…..liked it?  No, he didn’t like it. He ate the crap out of it, even after he found out that it was tofu.  However, from that point forward his guard was up.  No egg white or hunk’o’cheese escaped his glare, and it was all that I could do to convince him that yes, white asparagus was really a vegetable, before he’d hazard a bite.

Now, however, time has barely healed those old wounds of culinary betrayal, so I figured the time was nigh to rip the scab off and start him off fresh again.  With tofu.  Which he hates. Because, really, that’s just what I do.

When I was making these ice pops, I ran out of popsicle molds when I only had two pops left to go.  The horrors!  Well, waste not want not, so I put the leftovers into a glass and fed Mike his ‘pre-dinner smoothie’.  He lapped it down. Of course, when he asked me what was in it (“Cherries?  Cherries and yoghurt?”) I hedged.   Uh, ummmm…no, not cherries.  Those are plums, and OH LOOK, I HAVE TO GO, THE OVEN TIMER IS GOING OFF. But whatever.  He drank it all down, and then licked out the residual smoothie in the glass using his index finger as a spoon.  So really, how awful could it be?  Am I a bad person for tricking my fiancée into slurping something that I knew he would like, if he could only get beyond the ingredients?  I thought not.

Almonds and plums go together like peas and carrots, but somewhat more delicious if you know what I mean.  Have you ever had a deceptively light plum frangipane tart?  Done well, it’s to die for.  Seriously.  Plums and almonds is just where it’s at.  Stone fruit have always had an affinity for almonds in a decidedly incestuous sort of way (well, c’mon, we know they share the genus prunus so don’t get all high and mighty on me) regardless of what the iteration may be.  Plum grunt with an almond crumble on top?  Yes, please.  Plum pie with an almond shortcrust lattice top?  Well, if I must. Plum and almond flavored tofu pops?  Absolutely, as long as it gets Mike to say, “Baby, I was wrong.”  I don’t think that’s asking too much.

Creamy Vegan Plum-sicles

Makes 8-10 popsicles

  • 5 large, ripe red or purple plums
  • 1/2 package (~ 500g or slightly over 1/2 lb) silken tofu *
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract

IMG_2805

Slice those ripe and juicy plums in half and discard the pits.  Cut each into several wedges, if only to make it easier on your blender.

Put the plums into a large blender along with 1/2 package of silken tofu.  The standard sized tofu packages that I buy are about 1 lb 3 oz, so one half of that is….about 500 grams?  Or just slightly more than 1/2 lb.  Pour overtop the 1/3 cup of liquid honey (if it’s not liquid then 30 seconds in the microwave should take care of that) and the almond extract.

Blend until the mixture has a smooth consistency with no pesky bits of plum hanging out around the edges.

IMG_2809

Pour the mixture into popsicle molds and insert the sticks (or…whatever).  A mistake that I’ve made many a time, being greedy, is to fill the mold up to the top.  Don’t do this.  Believe me, it’s not worth the heartache.  Only fill it up until there is a scant 1/4″ of space at the top so that when the pop freezes and expands it won’t drive the stick out in a fit of elephantiasis.

I had three flats of glorious popsicle molds, once upon a time.  Each one held a total of six pops, which meant that I could make 18 ice pops in one fell swoop.  The thing is, when Mike and I amalgamated our households and started coming to terms with the fact that maybe we didn’t really need six boxes of boutique glassware, or three mandolins, one of the groups that got sniped was my popsicle molds.  Don’t get me wrong, I fought tooth and nail to keep those plastic girders.  His logic was just too strong.

Mike: “Tina, when was the LAST TIME that you used those?”

Tina: “Huff!!  Pfffft!!  Well, I WOULD have used them last year, I just didn’t get around to it because I was DEPORTED OVERSEAS for half the summer for ‘work purposes’….”

Mike: “So…it’s been more than a year?”

Tina: “It depends on how you DEFINE a year….”

Mike: “Tina, say goodbye to your popsicle molds.  I promise you that they’ll find a good home.”

Note:  They did NOT find a good home.  They were bought out by some squirrelly looking teenager who I’m fairly certain was going to use them for oversized jello shots…..okay.  Point taken.  Maybe they DID find a good home.

Anyway, cut forward to the present.  I now need popsicle molds (Mike:  I TOLD you this day would come eventually!!) and they’re nowhere to be found.  To date, I’ve checked out five (5) dollar stores, but to no avail.  I suppose that I could just break down and look at a kitchen supply store, but…that’s really not my style. Anyway, after weeks of looking, I finally came across these puppies at a No Frills.  They’re….almost like normal popsicle molds?  Maybe even better, right?  They have the popsicle stick AND a straw, so you can nip and lick OR sip.  Whatever your heart desires!!

No.  I know.  I wasn’t convinced either, but they were the best that I could do for under $2 per pack.

IMG_2811

Freeze the pops for 4-6 hours, or overnight, until they’re solid.

The honey and almond add just a bit of delectable nuttiness to set off the natural sweetness of the plum without overpowering it.

IMG_2881

I asked Mike what he thought.

Mike: “Mmmmmgrgermmmm!  Yummmmmrgggerrr!!!!!”

Tina: “Oh good!  Babe, I’m so glad to hear you like them!  I thought you had something against….tofu….”

Mike:  “Mmm…mwrahhh?????  *pfffa, pfffft pfffatttttt!*  Huh.  Fine.  Yeah, fine, whatever.  You and your slick trickery……”

And with that, he just kept eating.  I consider that a win.  Or, should I say, another win. We’ll have him eating sweet chili tofu kebabs before you know it……

The tofu tribunal?  I have decided that no matter how deep seeded one’s hatred for tofu might be, if you puree a silken tofu with other ingredients that someone likes?  They’ll never know what hit them.  Such is my win, through misrepresentation if nothing else.

And…….I’ll take it.

IMG_2889

  • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Mike

    1. They sell popcicle molds at Ikea for, like, a dollar.

    2. Your deceptive trickery is entirely welcome when you make things as good as this. And here I was wondering why, when you served it to me in its unfrozen “energy shake” form the night before, it was so jiggly.

    3. I am not wrong.

  • http://www.chrisgurney.ca Chris

    Tina, these look delicious, and might be worth a spin. 🙂

    One catch, though: My girlfriend Meg is vegan and excludes honey from her diet. Any suggestions for substitutes?

  • kate

    Chris,

    I know your question is directed at Tina, but I’ve seen vegan recipes that call for Agave nectar (also called Agave syrup) instead of honey. It’s a similar consistency and flavor, and comes from the Agave plant (yep, the plant from which tequila is made.)

    I’ve seen it in both light and dark varieties, but don’t know which would be better here — the darker syrup has the stronger flavor.

    Tina, would this stuff work instead of the honey?

    • http://www.chrisgurney.ca Chris

      Thanks Kate.

      I also pointed Meg to the recipe and she suggested maple syrup. Not sure how either Agave nectar or maple syrup would affect the flavor, but I’m willing to fail a batch to find out. 🙂

      • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Mike

        I can’t speak for Agave nectar, but maple syrup wouldn’t be a bad complement to the flavor. I wasn’t kidding when I said it tasted like cherries, so I would expect maple to add a burned-sugar sweetness to it.

        • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

          Thanks guys! Kate – agave nectar is exactly what I would have suggested. It’s sweet and blends easily. I actually prefer to use it in cocktails rather than simple syrup, if it weren’t so damnably expensive here from the specialty stores.

          Chris – if you do try agave, use the light/clear variety. Maple syrup would totally change the flavor of the pops, but I agree with Mike – the flavors would be complementary. In fact, that sounds rather delicious. Maple and almonds and stone fruit, oh my! Ooh, or you could use maple syrup and sub in peaches instead of plums? And see how I’m totally rewriting this recipe based on your suggestions? ‘) If you do try (any iteration of this) let us know which path you took and how it turned out! You’re right, even a failed experiment would only be about $3 out of pocket…which is about the same price as the last half pint that shouldn’t have been ordered at last call. Just putting it into Tina-world perspective.

  • http://thespitefulchef.blogspot.com kristie

    Protein popsicles?? That’s a genius post-workout treat, after a grueling run in the heat. Tell him that. Tell him it helps with his running. He’ll be sucking them down. Speaking of, are you still training for a race? Or have you been busy with gardening and work and being sane?

    I wanna see your wedding dress. Go buy it.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Mike

      I can totally hear you, you know.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Ha! Clarification: I am training for a RUN, not for a race. Fast and athletic people ‘race’. I just huff and puff along like Thomas the Train(wreck), hoping that I won’t pop a vein in my neck before I reach the finish. But yes, I’m still working on that. I still can’t do 5K without a couple minute long walking intervals, but considering that my starting point was a sedentary two-toed tree sloth state of being? At least it’s progress……

      Ah, the dress. Kind of a point of contention right now. I don’t want to get married in white. I was thinking either red or pewter…which apparently everyone and their brother has something to say about, and not much of it is good. But really, whatever. It’s our wedding, right? If I want to walk down that (secular and non denominational) aisle wearing Wellys and a tutu, well, people will just have to suck it up. That’s what I have to say.

      • kate

        I got married in dark red, so I say go for it! (Although I love the idea of pewter, too.) While I got a few raised eyebrows in the process of having my dress made, most people had to admit that the color looked good and that when they really thought about it they couldn’t picture me in a white dress anyway. (Which probably says something about me, but eh, whatever.)

  • Pingback: Raw Capitalism, Part 1 – Booze | Choosy Beggars()