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Quadruple Lemon Vegan Meringue Popsicles

These show-stopping lemon vegan meringue herbal popsicles are tangy, icy, and refreshing. They’re a bit of a labour of love, and you’ll have plenty of extra vegan meringue to make meringue cookies or pavlova, so get your brûlée torch ready!

lemon vegan meringue popsicles cover

These are the fifth and final instalment of my herbal popsicle series, and I really wanted to finish with a bang. What better way than to end with a recipe involving fire?

 

These are fun to make, but difficult to store, so I suggest taking the popsicles out of the freezer and topping them with meringue right when you’re ready to serve them. You’ll just squish the meringue if you try to put them in a container. Freeze the popsicles and prepare the meringue separately, and gather your popsicle-loving family and friends when you’re ready to assemble them. 

 

I call it “quadruple lemon” because the popsicle is made with a strong infusion of three lemon-scented herbs, plus fresh lemon juice. 

 

The vegan meringue is optional, but the sweetness is really nice to balance the tart popsicles. It’s made with aquafaba, which means “water of the beans” because it is made from the liquid from a can of chickpeas. Someone discovered that this liquid behaves like egg whites when whipped, and now it’s a popular vegan alternative to many dishes requiring that special fluff. There’s a Facebook group dedicated to sharing recipes and tips for using this wonderful new vegan egg replacer.

Yeild: 4 popsicles and way more meringue than you need

Base Ingredients

Handful of lemon-scented herbs: lemon balm, lemon verbena, lemon thyme + more for garnish if desired

3-4 stevia leaves

½ cup lemon juice (approx. juice of 2 large lemons)

3 tbsp maple syrup (or more to taste)

Vegan Meringue Ingredients

Liquid from a can of chickpeas

½ tsp cream of tartar

1” vanilla bean

1 cup organic cane sugar

 

Make the Lemon Popsicles

  1. Make a strong infusion with the lemony herbs and stevia by steeping them in about a cup of boiling water for 10 minutes.
  2. In a measuring cup, mix ½ cup lemon juice, ¾ cup of the lemon herbal infusion and 3 tbsp maple syrup. Whisk. Taste for sweetness, add more maple syrup to taste if you like. Don’t forget that if you are doing the meringue, it’s basically sugary air so you won’t need to make the popsicle base as sweet as you might if you’re eating the base without the meringue.
  3. Optional – place thyme sprigs or herb leaves in the molds before pouring in the liquid. 
  4. The maple syrup will settle, so whisk thoroughly and quickly pour into molds immediately.
  5. Freeze

 

The Vegan Meringue made with Aquafaba

Because you need to open a can of chickpeas and use the liquid for this recipe, you might as well use all of the liquid. This makes WAY more meringue than you need so you might want to also plan to make pavlova or meringue cookies. 

Strain a can of chickpeas and reserve the liquid.

 

Cut the vanilla bean in half and scrape the seeds out into a medium bowl. Add the sugar. Mix the sugar and the vanilla seeds.You’ll still have some vanilla clumps at this point, but they’ll blend out in the mixer.

 

In a stand mixer, beat the chickpea liquid for 1 minute. Add the cream of tartar. Beat until incorporated. 

 

Start adding the sugar-vanilla mix 1 tbsp at a time. Wait until it’s mixed in before adding the next tablespoon.

 

The vegan meringue will get thick and glossy as you add more sugar. When all the sugar is added, beat until you can’t feel any granules when you pinch a bit of meringue between your fingers. If the meringue still feels grainy, continue beating it. 

 

Now for the fun part!

Get everything you’ll need ready: the prepared meringue, a brûlée torch, herb leaves or sprigs for garnish, and people ready to eat popsicles, because as I mentioned, they don’t store well once they’re decorated. Oh, and get your camera because you’ll want to Instagram these ones!

all the lemon vegan meringue popsicles

Loosen the popsicles from the mold. One at a time, take a big spoonful of meringue and make a dollop on top on each popsicle, that goes covers it about ¼ of the way down the popsicle. Swirl it around until you’re happy with the shape. You want to have some texture for scorching, so don’t make it too smooth. I imagined I was trying to get it to look like a soft serve ice cream cone with swirly ridges spiralling upwards. It was less possible in reality than in my imagination, but swirling the spoon around gave some texture to the blob. 

Scorching the Meringue

 

If you haven’t used a brûlée torch before, I recommend practicing. Smear some meringue on a heat-proof plate and try scorching that first. You’ll find you want the flame parallel to the surface of the meringue or it will deform the meringue. Slowly move the flame toward the ridges of the meringue and you’ll see it will get tiny bubbles and quickly toast and then burn so keep moving the flame around. 

 

With your brûlée torch in one hand and a meringued popsicle in the other hand, light the torch. Point both the flame and the pop away from you so they’re roughly parallel. Slowly move the flame toward the meringue, and scorch the ridges of the meringue. 

 

Garnish with a leaf or sprig of lemony herbs. The tiny leaves off the top of a lemon verbena or lemon balm make a cute garnish. Take photos for Instagram.

Using the Rest of the Vegan Meringue

Here’s a detailed tutorial about making this vegan meringue, and how to flavour and bake meringue cookies. 

There are also lots of delicious pavlova recipes out there that you could make with the rest of the meringue.

In case you missed Herbal Popsicle Month, here’s a roundup of my previous herbal popsicles:

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Herbal Remedies for Anxiety

Don’t Panic!

We all experience fear and anxiety from time to time.  At times we may feel overwhelmed by life’s responsibilities – work, family, our health, finances, the environment etc.  At other times emergency situations, traumatic events, or other stressful situations can induce feelings of anxiety.  For some people the symptoms are mild and easily managed, for others anxiety is replaced by stupor from prescription drugs.  The following tools are proven safe and effective for promoting calm and reducing anxiety.

Symptoms of anxiety include poor concentration, persistent worrisome thoughts, shortness of breath, indigestion, headache, trembling, restlessness, sweats, and palpitations or accelerated heart rate.

Sage – a recent clinical trial has shown oral doses of this common herb to reduce anxiety.  It does so by inhibiting enzymes that break down neurotransmitters in the brain that effect mood.  It has a fortifying effect on the nervous system and is especially helpful for women experiencing menopausal symptoms related to stress.  It has a strong flavour and is best combined with other herbs in a tea or tincture formula.

Lemon balm – has anxiety reducing properties, acting like sage by affecting the life span of neurotransmitters in the brain.  It has a special affinity for the nervous component of the digestive system and is valuable for indigestion and intestinal spasm triggered by stress. It has a gentle calming and uplifting quality.  It is a pleasant tasting tea and easy to grow in the garden.

Kava – this strong acting herb decreases anxiety and relaxes the body without loss of mental alertness.  It is fast acting for times of acute need; I use it with people who experience regular panic attacks.  It helps to relieve muscle tension and headaches associated with stress.  Unfortunately, access to this herb is limited; most herbal practitioners carry it in their dispensaries.

Valerian – this herb has a tradition of use for nervous unrest dating back thousands of years.  It is a popular remedy for insomnia due to stress and anxiety.  It has a strong and quick acting action, like kava, for panic attacks.  It also settles the digestive system that is agitated by stress due to its soothing effect of smooth muscle.  It is best taken in tincture form, in 30 drop doses as needed, or as part of a sleep regulating herbal program.

Rescue Remedy – this is a combination flower essence that is intended for acute stressful situations such as accidents, bad news, dental visits, flights, performances, nightmares in children, etc.  I have had excellent results with this remedy with people and pets.  Good addition to any first aid kit.

Aromatherapy – essential oils give plants their aroma.  Essential oils have been extracted from plants for thousands of years for use in perfumery and healing.  When inhaled they have a direct affect on the brain thus giving relief too many psychological states.  The effects are usually instantaneous.  Essential oils are easy to use – they simply need to be smelled.  Small bottles can be carried at all times and sniffed often or as needed directly from the bottle.  They can be used in oil burners to spread the aroma throughout a room.  They can be diluted and added to the bath or applied to the skin.  Pure essential oils are generally well tolerated by those sensitive to perfumes and other chemical scents.  What better way to promote wellbeing than from a beautiful, aromatic essence!  Sample the oils at aromatherapy shops or health food stores to find one that you resonate with.  The following oils promote calm and reduce anxiety: Lavender, rose geranium, clary sage, rose, ylang ylang, jasmine, balm, cedarwood, lemongrass, vetiver, rosewood.

In addition to our herbal helpers, it is important to remember the value of deep breathing and exercise as tools for managing anxiety and stress.  When we are stressed we tend to take shallow breaths which only compound the problem.  A minute of deep belly breathing can take the edge off of any stressful situation.  When stressed and anxious we produce the hormones adrenalin and cortisol; these can build up in the body and contribute to more chronic stress states.  Exercise is a sure way to burn off these excess hormones in the system.  A brisk walk works wonders for relieving anxiety.

These valuable self-help tools are very effective for those with occasional anxiety.  I recommend that those with regular anxiety or anxiety disorders consult with a herbal practitioner to obtain a more comprehensive treatment strategy.