In my head paleta de batata (sweet potato popsicles) and summer are indelebly connected.
When I was a kid I spent many a summer in the Santo Domingo neighborhood of San Carlos, where one of my aunts lived. Back then it was the kind of old-fashioned middle class neighborhood you see in movies depicting the Spanish Caribbean. It was a quiet place of tranquil streets that lent itself to childhood exploration.
Besides the memories of Hurricane David pounding Santo Domingo into a pulp, the other clear memory I have of those days was walking every afternoon to buy helados de potecitos (homemade ice cream in baby food jars) at a neighbor’s house.
In the Santo Domingo of today, full of apartment buildings, not only has San Carlos become unrecognizable, but these childhood treats are probably long gone. Of all the flavors available in those days -some not very healthy – batata (sweet potato) was my favorite.
Some time ago I decided to recreate my favorite childhood treat.
Once I embarked on this project, I noticed that this is a very good option as an afternoon treat for the little ones. If you keep in mind not to overdo it with the sugar, it can be fairly nutritious.
As the Dominican saying goes: “Cuando el hambre da calor, la batata es un refresco” (when hunger makes you hot, sweet potatoes are like a cold drink). And if it is this insane heat to blame for it, make yourself a sweet potato popsicle.
Easy to make, refreshing and nutritious. Sweet potatoes popsicle is the perfect summer treat.
- 1 lb of sweet potatoes (purple skin, greenish flesh) peeled
- 2 cups of milk (whole or skim)
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- Cut the sweet potatoes into small pieces. Boil until they are very soft.
- Remove from the water and cool to room temperature.
- Mix sweet potatoes, milk, coconut milk and vanilla and blend to a liquid state.
- Add sugar to taste.
- Pour into the molds (or plastic cups) and place the stick.