Tamarind-Ancho Chile Popsicle

This popsicle has got some serious pucker!

Tamarind-Ancho Chile Popsicle

Tamarind Ancho Paleta Popsicle 

When Annie was looking for different recipes to try for the Royal Selangor Jellyriffic Challenge, she happened upon this recipe for Tamarind-Ancho Chile Popsicle on Saveur. She said she could actually imagine the sweet-sour-spicy flavors, and it made her mouth water. So she put it down as one of our options. Last night, she tasked me with making it (the instructions seemed easy enough for me to do).

Tamarind – Ancho Chile Popsicles Recipe

adapted from Saveur Magazine, Issue #131
Prep time: 15 min / Total time: 5 hrs


2 cups water
4 ounces assam jawa (tamarind paste)
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp ancho chile powder
2 grams konnyaku powder (if making a jelly)


1. Mix together the water and the tamarind paste, rubbing the tamarind flesh off the seeds and breaking it down. Strain the liquid through a sieve into a saucepan to capture all the larger solids.

2. Add the sugar to the liquid and bring to a boil over medium heat. Simmer for a few minutes and then remove from heat. Transfer the liquid into a bowl and refrigerate until chilled.

Making Tamarind Ancho paleta pop

3. Whisk in the chile powder and then pour the liquid in to the Royal Selangor Jelly Moulds. Freeze for about 1 hour, then insert a popsicle stick into the mould (I used a couple of chopsticks, cut to fit).

4. Freeze until the pops are solid, about 3 more hours.  (The popsicle came out of the mould pretty easily without having to dip it in warm water.)

A Pop AND a Jelly

I actually did both a popsicle and a jelly, using the same tamarind liquid. I had reserved 1 cup of the mixture to chill for the popsicle. To the remaining cup of tamarind mixture I added the 2 grams of konnyaku powder and whisked that in to combine. This I poured into another mould and put it in the fridge to set.

Tamarind – Ancho Chile Popsicle and Jelly

Tamarind Ancho Paleta Popsicle and Jelly

These creations came out looking much darker than what was shown on the original recipe. And they had WAY more of a sour pucker which overwhelmed the sugar and spice. I guess I shouldn’t have used so much tamarind paste.

The kids gave this one a thumbs down, mostly because of the sourness. The popsicle itself wasn’t that bad – I finished it off – but it wasn’t as beguilingly pleasant as the Ono Pops we enjoyed at the KCC Farmer’s Market back in Hawaii.  Still, I think it’s worth trying again. Perhaps I’ll cut the tamarind paste down to just 1 ounce and see how it tastes then.

But hey, at least it proves that the jelly mould is also good for making popsicles. And the flavor possibilities are endless. So that’s a good thing! I could end up making some “Ono-Cono Pops” of my own!

Aloha, Nate

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