I’m, like, totally a child of the 80s.
For proof, look no futher than my first shoe purchase — a pair of pink jellies – and my first concert — the Los Angeles stop of the Bad world tour. Oh, the fact I was all but addicted to Jello-O pudding pops. My parents actually wouldn’t keep them in the house so I would save up allowance to buy them on the hush-hush down at the local cornerstore. But, I grew out of that habit and hadn’t thought of them for years until Kristen of Dine & Dish mentioned this book a few weeks ago. And then I had a craving. I mean, one of those cravings that won’t quit. No amount of chocolate ice cream, gelato, or yogurt could quell it — it had to be a pudding pop.
But the pudding pop is all but extinct and, even if it were around, I’d shy away from it because it was likely made with scary stabilizers and fake sweeteners. And no amount of cajoling from Bill Crosby could convince me otherwise. So, I came up with a healthier, more adult take, my Grown-Up Pudding Pops. They’re fudge-y and chocolatey like the classic, but I made them more refined by adding espresso, cocoa nibs, toasted coconut for a more darker chocolate flavor and some crunchy texture. But don’t think that means I’m giving up the jellies and my OG Bad jacket. No, it may be 2011, but I’m still an 80s baby through and through.
Toasted Coconut and Cacao Nib Pops Recipe
These dairy-free frozen pops came out of the desire to make a chocolate-y treat even my dairy-free friends could enjoy.
Makes: 4 cups ice cream or 8 (4 ounce) popsicles
3 cups lite or regular coconut milk
2/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/3 cup unrefined sugar
1 teaspoon instant espresso or coffee powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup unsweetened flaked coconut, toasted
1/2 cup cacao nibs
Fill a bowl halfway with ice water (or ice and frozen ice packs) and set aside.
Combine everything except coconut and cacao nibs in a medium saucepan and whisk until evenly combined. Heat it over medium-high heat, whisking regularly, until it just boils and the sugar is dissolved.
Remove from heat, pour mixture into a resealable plastic bag, and nest bag in the ice water bath until mixture is cold, at least 15 minutes. If turning into popsicles, fold in coconut and cacao nibs (if using) and place into molds. If turning into ice cream, process in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When the ice cream is set, fold in coconut and cacao nibs (if using) then freeze as ice cream or fudge pops and freeze thoroughly, at least 4 hours.
Let sit at room temperature a few minutes before unmolding the popsicles or serving the ice cream.