The unofficial beginning of summer signifies a lot of great things: farmers markets overflowing with juicy, ripe fruit, enjoying all of your meals outside, and the need to cool off quick during the dog days, for example.
That’s why we’re all about these amazing ice pops from the The Ranch at Live Oak, an ultra-luxe wellness retreat in Malibu that’s known for its hardcore fitness program, five-star accommodations, and ultra-clean (and delicious) food.
Added sugar, meat, dairy, wheat, alcohol, caffeine, and processed foods are nowhere to be seen. But you’re still treated to beautifully presented vegetarian meals, with ingredients pulled straight from an on-site garden.
Owners Alex and Sue Glasscock, who live on the ranch, admittedly take advantage of the crazy-good meals their team whips up for guests, and they’ve learned a thing or two that they’re now sharing in their recently released book, The Ranch at Live Oak Cookbook. In it, you’ll find some of the classic recipes from the legendary wellness spa, including these scrumptious ice pops.
“The Watermelon, Lime, and Hibiscus Ice Pop is an antioxidant superstar with its high content of vitamin c and lycopene,” Alex Glasscock says. “They cool the body off on a hot day and are packed with delicious flavor.”
Whip them up to impress guests at your Memorial Day soiree—and use them to cool down all summer long. —Jamie McKillop
Watermelon, Lime, and Hibiscus Ice Pops
1/4 cup dried hibiscus flowers*
2 1/2 cups watermelon chunks (from about 1 1/4 pounds watermelon or 1/2 mini watermelon)
1/4 cup raw agave nectar
1/2 tsp lime zest
3 Tbsp fresh lime juice
In a small saucepan, bring 3/4 cup water and the dried hibiscus flowers to a simmer. Turn off the heat and let stand until cool. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. In a food processor, blend the watermelon chunks until liquefied. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve lined with muslin into a pitcher; discard any solids. You should have about 1 1/2 cups watermelon juice. Stir the hibiscus water, agave nectar, and lime zest and juice into the watermelon juice. Pour the juice mixture into ice pop molds and freeze until firm, about 7 hours.
*Ingredient note: You can buy dried hibiscus flowers, also known as sorrel, in Indian, Latin, Caribbean, and Middle Eastern markets. (And if you can’t find them, it’s fine to go without!)
(Photo: The Ranch at Live Oak)