Paletas de Piña con Chile (Spicy Pineapple Ice Pops)
In Mexico, fruit and chiles are often found together: in fruit stands, where ground chiles are sprinkled over freshly cut fruit; in fruit-flavored lollipops covered with ground chiles; and in many different ice pops. The spiciness in these ice pops comes from a chile-infused syrup and chunks of fresh pineapple tossed with ground chiles, so they have different layers of flavor and spiciness.
Makes 8 to 10
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 small serrano or jalapeño pepper, split lengthwise
- 1 ripe pineapple, peeled
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 to 2 teaspoons ground chiles (piquín, guajillo, or árbol)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until the mixture comes to a boil and the sugar has dissolved.
- Add the serrano, lower the heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Let cool to room temperature. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve.
- Finely dice 1½ cups of the pineapple and coarsely chop the rest. Mixed the diced pineapple with the chile and salt and set aside.
- Put the coarsely chopped pineapple in a blender or food processor, pour in the syrup, lime juice, and blend until smooth.
- Divide the blended mixture among the molds, leaving enough room for the diced pineapple. If using conventional molds, don’t snap on the lids yet. Freeze until the mixture has a slushy consistency, about 30 minutes. (This will prevent the diced pineapple from sinking to the bottom when added.)
- Drop the diced pineapple into the ice pops, dividing it evenly among the molds. If it floats, push it down with a small spoon or an ice pop stick.
- If using conventional molds, snap on the lid and freeze until solid, about 5 hours. If using glasses or other unconventional molds, freeze until the pops are beginning to set (45 minutes to 1 hour), then insert the sticks and freeze until solid, 3 to 4 hours. If using an instant ice pop maker, mix the diced pineapple in with the blended mixture, then pour into the molds and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.