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A Trio of Tropical Pops ...inspired by The Mistress of Spices {food 'n flix}

As a young girl in India, Tilo's parents were murdered by bandits, but she escapes and (literally) washes up on the shore of a hidden group of mistresses led by First Mother.  First Mother teaches Tilo and the rest of the girls in the ancient art of spices.

When she is ready, Tilo is dispensed to San Francisco where she runs Spice Bazaar.  Her mission: to help clients achieve their desires; but never her own.  She must never leave the store.  And she must never touch the skin of another.  Tilo has the ability to see the future.  Using her clairvoyance, she dispenses spices and food as curatives...and to help others get what they need.

All is well until a mysterious stranger appears and caused Tilo to question the ways that she was taught and lives by.
This is a fun flick laden with rich, visual imagery of both food and spices, but also clothing and landscape.  It has romance.  And plenty of opportunity for a belly rumble.  It definitely brings out my inner witch.  It's not the deepest of films and I thought it was lacking a lot.  I'm betting the book will answer my desire to delve deeper into the story.  (It's on order.)  Oh, and as another foodie aspect, Padma Lakshmi has a little part in the film...though it has nothing to do with food.

The Mistress of Spices is our Food 'n Flix pick for this month, chosen by our host Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla.  There's still a couple of days left for you to watch and post something inspired by this film, if you like.  Since I am in hard-core popsicle mode lately, it probably comes as no surprise that I chose to make some that were inspired by this film.  Afterall, it's hot in India.  And in San Francisco.  Go with it.  And all three are laced with the mysterious properties of their spices...so choose wisely when sharing them.


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Vanilla for... its power to bring love, its lust-inducing properties, and its ability to restore lost energy and improve the mind.
Paletas de Coco (Creamy Coconut Ice Pops)

by Heather Schmitt-González
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
Cook Time: 10-15 minutes for toasting coc
Keywords: dessert side coconut coconut milk popsicles American Mexican summer

Ingredients (6-8)
  • 1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • ⅔ c. half-and-half
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ c. unsweetened, shredded coconut
Instructions
Preheat oven to 325° F. Spread coconut in a thin layer on a baking sheet. Place in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, stirring it around every few minutes for even toasting. Alternately, you could place coconut in a nonstick pan and toast on top of the stove (my preferred method because it's quicker), but you need to watch it at all times. Toast and toss constantly until golden and toasty and beautiful smelling.

Place coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, half-and-half, salt, and vanilla in blender and blend until smooth. Stir in the toasted coconut.

Divide among popsicle molds and freeze until hard, inserting popsicle sticks at the correct time for your molds.
slighty adapted from Paletas
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Chiles for... their ability to bring and reveal love and fidelity, and also for their hex-breaking properties.
Spicy Pineapple Ice Pops (Paletas de Piña con Chile)

by Heather Schmitt-González
Prep Time: 30 minutes + time to freeze
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Keywords: dessert snack vegan chiles pineapple popsicles American Mexican summer

Ingredients (8-10)
  • 1 c. water
  • ½ c. superfine sugar
  • 1 serrano chile, split lengthwise
  • 1 ripe pineapple, peeled & cored
  • 2 Tbs. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1½ tsp. ground chiles de árbol (or piquín or guajillo)
  • ½ tsp. salt
Instructions
Cook water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high until mixture comes to a boil and sugar dissolves. Add the serrano and lower heat; simmer for 5 minutes. Let the mixture cool to room temperature and then strain.

Finely dice 1½ cups of the pineapple. Mix with ground chile and salt; set aside.

Coarsely chop the rest of the pineapple and place in a blender with the cooled syrup and lime juice. Blend until smooth.

Divide mixture among your popsicle molds, leaving about ¼ - ⅓ of the mold empty. Freeze until slushy, ~30 minutes.

Divide the pineapple-chile mixture among the molds, in the space that you left, pushing it down a bit with one of the popsicle sticks.

Freeze pops, adding sticks when appropriate for your molds, until solid.

note:
How many ice pops you get really depends on the size of your pineapple. Try looking for one that is medium in size.
slightly adapted from Paletas
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Cinnamon for... increased spirituality, overall healing, increased psychic powers, protection, and its ability to manifest lover, gain knowledge, and be a friend-maker.
Roasted Banana & Cinnamon Popsicles

by Heather Schmitt-González
Prep Time: 30 minutes + time to freeze
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Keywords: roast dessert snack vegetarian nut-free bananas cinnamon popsicles American Mexican summer fall

Ingredients (8-10)
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • ¼ c. packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tbs. sugar
  • 1 c. whole milk
  • ½ c. heavy cream
  • ¾ tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • pinch salt
  • 1 Tbs. dark rum (optional)
Instructions
Preheat oven to 400° F. Wrap unpeeled bananas individually in foil. Roast until soft, ~25-30 minutes. When cool enough to handle, scoop the flesh from the peels and place in a small bowl.
Add both sugars and smoosh together with a fork until the sugars have dissolved. Place in the jar of a blender along with milk, cream, vanilla, lemon juice, cinnamon, salt, and rum (if using). Blend until smooth. Refrigerate until cold.

Divide mixture amongst popsicle molds and freeze, inserting popsicle sticks at the correct time for the type of mold you have.
adapted from Paletas
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I am sharing this post with:
Food 'n Flix hosted by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Food‘nFlix
The Summer of the Popsicle 2012 at girlichef.com Tasty Tuesdays 33 shades of green tasty-tuesday-larger-logo1 hearthnsoul150 a little birdie told me rook no. 17