Sunday, October 16, 2011

We ( mostly Amanda) made a mistake...

I hesitate to write this blog for several reasons, none of them being that I have a hard time accepting when I make mistakes ( though I am a perfectionist). I hesitate, mostly because  when I finish writing this blog and I hit send, I am pretty much sending this out into a nebula for the reader to interpret how he or she likes, despite what I write.  And that my friends, is the catch-22 of blogging; one can read as much as one likes about another human being without ever truly getting to know them or understanding them, opinions form and sometimes they are not accurate---I fear this...anywho, moving on to my mistake. 

As most of you know, Aland and I closed down Cranky Boots for personal reasons. At that point in time, we seriously thought we were done with pops---though we loved Cranky,dearly. We canceled out of being a part of Eat Real, packed up our popsicles sticks, and sadly closed the doors.  Several weeks later, we were  still crushed about leaving our pop business, and felt as though we were abandoning our baby, so we talked it over, and decided that come hell or high water Cranky must continue. Being the artist type  that we are, we decided to keep this thing going one week before Eat Real. Being the loving beings that the staff of Eat Real are, they welcomed these prodigal sons home with open arms and reinstated our place at the Eat Real Table. Cranky was back in business! 

So far, so good, right?  Well, kinda.  Since we decided to jump back in on the Eat Real game super late, we were left with very little time to prepare. At that point in time, I did what I thought was good idea and decided to pull our inventory from August out of the freezer, sort through them, taste a couple from sample batches, and sell the " good ones" as Three Legged Misfits. (Discounted Pops). I also made our fall season pops ( pumpkin and fig) and those sold delightfully, without a hiccup but that little detail is moot.  The problem with selling Three Legged Misfits to our clientele this time around, is that no one realized that they were buying  Three Legged Misfits, ( I think this was poor communication on my part). Admittedly, some of the pops from the August inventory, which sold as Three Legged Misfits were not even up to Three Legged Misfit standard ( though there's no way of knowing this, unless you taste the pop and for obvious reasons, I couldn't taste a pop I was selling).  And this is my mistake.  I sold you guys pops from  our summer inventory assuming that you would know that they were clearance pops, and you didn't.  Well, some of you did, but I don't think most of you did.  We got a lot of compliments on our Three Legged Misfits, but I also heard a handful of complaints (understandably) of the pops being icy (which is what happens when certain flavors of pops hang out in the freezer for 3 weeks). Bottom line is that we don't like that you had that experience with us.  I am sorry. We are sorry.  

I've thought on this some, and I haven't quite figured out how I could fix this situation moving forward or what I could have done differently ( other than not sell discounted pops from our month's prior inventory), but I would like to give a free regular ( non-Three Legged Misfit) pop to anyone who had this experience with us.  We truly want our customers to have a wonderful experience when eating our pops, and if that means calling a do-over,we'll do what it takes.   

So, if this happened to you, please email me with the flavor of pop that you had, and come see us at The Layover this upcoming Sunday or let us know where we can drop one off, and we'll give you a free pop.  I promise, this time around, our pops will be everything that they are supposed to be: delicious. 

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Why Cranky does what it does...

    There's been an uprising of Pop businesses in the Bay Area; that's not surprising, San Francisco is one of the hubs of food trend. We produce a lot of agriculture, so we have some of the most amazing produce. We attract a lot of artisans, so we have some of the most amazing wines, cheeses, and fanfare to bare.  A couple of years ago, the fad was cupcakes and frozen yogurt, today it's food trucks, illogical pairings that work ( for the most part), and people needing something to do with their lives until we, as a country, see our way out of this recession. All that to say, it makes sense for The Bay Area to be  fully immersed in food trend--some good and completely passionate, some completely for capitalist gain, and others---mmm---not-so-much, but to each his/her own. 

So where does Cranky Boots Cold Confections stand in the middle of  food trucks, cupcakes, and our country's hard economical times ? 

    The short answer is that we stand in the middle of community. Before the Pop fad hit the streets of San Francisco and The East Bay, Aland and I had a heart for building community using the means which we were given ( a love of food, a commitment to sustainability, a couple of dollars, and a curiosity). We did what any  rational human being would do and we connected the dots; we started with community and ended with a Pop in our hands.  

We started with Oakland, and loving her the way we do, but also fully aware that she is often times considered " the ugly sister," we committed ourselves to being in solidarity with who she truly is. She is creativity, often before her time, community, justice, leadership, and those  in between places chocked full of wisdom and grit. And in those places, those go between places of  laughter and struggle, charm and horror, progression and stagnancy, is  where we found our farmers, our artists (shout outs to Robert Trujillo, and Sharon Murriguez), and YOU, our customers needing a bit of reprieve from day-to-day living.  

Our motto is, " to bring some joyous essence of summer nostalgia to everyday folks..." and what we mean is that yes, we want you to enjoy our pops and we want them to take you back to childhood, but know that when you are eating one of our pops, you too are also connecting the dots; we also want the joyous essence of summer nostalgia for our farmers, our artists, and for the East Bay community. We aren't a fad. We've had our ups and downs, and scares and not-so-good ideas, but we're committed to building and sustaining the Bay Area community, which is you, I, and We. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

Life is Living

We love being a part of the Oakland Community, so when Bryant Terry e-mailed us asking if we'd hit this up( /, we had to say yes!  Y'all come out and support what's going on in Oakland on Saturday, October 8th, and while you're at it wouldn't hurt if you stopped by to get a pop from us. 

Here's what's on the menu: 

Sweet Potato Float w/ Cream 
Sweet Potato Float (Vegan) 
Figs with Goat Yogurt and a Balsamic Gastrique
Hibiscus Pineapple Limeade (Vegan) 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Eat Real

You guys, Eat Real put us on the map. We love being a part of the festival, this year we will be in the craft area, this Saturday and Sunday, come see us!

We are bringing out some of our fall flavors:

Pumpkin float
Spiced pear
Fig with goat yogurt and a balsamic gastrique.

See you there!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Sweet Lil Boos and a recipe

Project Avary ( asked us to come to Mendocino and give Pop Lessons to their kids. The kids attending have been affected by the prison system. Either both or one of their parents had served or were serving time in Prison. So, of course we said yes!  Hands down, teaching at Camp Avary was the most  rewarding experience of the summer.  The whole experience was ineffable and not even in some charitable sort of way, which makes one feel good about himself. It was in a way that makes one feel insanely alive and utterly connected to other human beings. 

Before we could even unload the car, we were  greeted with hugs and squeals from children and young adults eager to make pops! And pops we made, as Aland and I  taught 37 kids ( some who have never even  seen fresh fruits and veggies) how to create their own unique treat!  

As we began our lesson, almost all of the kids were surprised to see that we didn't just pour kool-aid or fruit juice into ice trays and call it a day. They seemed to  really enjoy the Farm to Freezer tour, as they picked through a plethora of fresh fruit to create their own masterpieces. The kids were super creative and really involved in each of the four pop making stages. One group came up with a flavor called " Mellow Yellow" and it consisted of cantaloupe, lime, banana and cream. A group of girls were enamored with the idea of re-inventing Strawberry Banana, as they came up with at least, 6 different variations of the flavor:  Strawberry-Banana with a hint of lime, Strawberry Banana with cream, Strawberry Banana sans the cream, and the list goes on and on.  HOWEVER, our favorite flavor of all time was done by a group of 5-9 year old Master Chefs, who wanted us to share their recipe with the world, and so, in their honor: 

The Madrone (named after their Cabin Bunk) Pop: 
Makes 4-6 Pops 

6-8 Red Plums 
6 Limes 
1 cup of Organic Cane Sugar 
1 cup of Water

Cut plums into small pieces and juice limes. Place water and sugar in a pot, and bring to a boil, until mixture thickens. Place all the ingredients in a blender that is safe for making soup, and blend until the mixture is smooth and free of chunks.  Pour in molds and freeze for 6-12 hours.  

...The kids will get to taste their delectable creations tomorrow (Thursday), at their Lake party and we're excited to hear back on how everything turned out, but did I mention that Aland and I had the most rewarding experience of the summer?? Oh, I did? Well, did I mention that on our drive home we saw a Humpback whale breaching? It was almost as cool as seeing sweet Lil Boos find a bit of reprieve from the often harsh and unfair world through a beautifully created pop. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Pics at Gay Pride...

We've come a long way... 

Aland will push a pop on a queen with glittered lips, SHAMELESS! 
Sho is a hustlin... 
Sweet lil dudes chillin on a Pop! 

Creative Growth

Hello Fine Citizens---

Creative Growth ( be giving away  our pops at their Art Exhibition on July 14th, 2011.

Here is some info:

Main Event: July 14, 5:00 pm
to 8:00 pm

Members Opening: 11:00 am to 2:00 pm

Creative Growth invites you to experience an exhibition of
inspired text based drawing and painting alongside a quality of
textile production so distinct and spectacular we can't keep it
to ourselves. (

Join us to collect quilts, rugs, weaving, hand-made garments,
artist upholstered furniture, paintings and drawings. Don't miss
typed works by Dan Miller, hand lettering by William Scott and
an introduction to emerging work by Creative Growth artists.

Including work by: Judith Scott, Dwight Mackintosh, Donald
Mitchell, William Tyler and many more.

And Introducing:


a quarterly, limited edition collection of artwork. Summer 2011
edition includes six works by: Francisco Andrade, Allan Lofberg,
Tony Pedemonte, Laura Jo Pierce, Aurie Ramirez and Ying Gee Zhou





Tuesday, June 28, 2011


 If you have a pool party or want some pops for 4th of July, think of us.  If you order 25 or more from us , we'll give you a mixed variety of pops ( both push-up and regular) for 1.50 per pop. Normally, we charge 3-4.00 per pop, so that's a pretty decent discount, folks.

Shoot us an email at, if you're interested. 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Google and Gay Pride

Forgive us for not updating you after Doof. We've been trying to get a couple of Z's in before all madness breaks loose. 

.... Google has asked us to do a private event with them in 2 weeks. Of course, we're totally big headed and honored. In fact, we have had several people ask about us to do summer parties, Art Exhibitions, Pool Parties, Weddings ( instead of cake or in addition to) and that brings me to my next point: We never thought of going the route of private events, BUT  We are happy to do an event for you and yours. We can even come up with your own signature flavor, if you'd like. So, if you have an idea or you'd like for us to do our thang at your event, shoot us over an email. 

If private eventing isn't really your thang, you should stop by our cart at Gay Pride Parade on June 24th and 25th and get a pop. We'll be serving up 6 out of our twelve flavors in our regular 3 oz pop format.

We'll post some pics from both events very soon!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

First event of the Season...

    Cranky Boots will be starting its season at Doof-a-Palooza (, on  Sunday May 22nd.  "What is Doof-a-palooza," you ask.  Well, it's a family oriented festival for kids of all ages, and the admission is free.  Doof-a-palooza was created as an aid in helping families to facilitate a  "source-to-table" way of thinking and life within their family.

Remember when it was embarrassing to open up your lunch box and see a wheat bread sandwich in your pail just staring at you, waiting to be eaten? At least I do, and I remember feeling kind of " stuck," as I knew no kid was going to trade me a healthy sandwich for their bag of chips---at least no sane kid. I remember never being allowed to have soda or sweet cereal and thinking my parents were the devil because of it. To be honest, I remember healthy eating being kind of a bore---but the tides are changing. Kids these days happily drink their Kombucha tea and tote their wheat bread sandwiches in their eco- friendly lunch boxes.  It's only right for us to be at Doof-a-palooza, selling our delicious pops, where this sort of thing is not only admonished but fostered; it's only right for you to be there too!

We will be helping 100 lucky kids make Whattup pops (read: Push-up Pops) in either their choice of Frutti Tutti Pop Xplosion, which is our hibiscus pineapple limeade with Cranky's own version of  Pop Rocks or Chocolate Puddin'. Both pops are vegan and made with organic fruit and minimal sugar. Don't worry, in addition to the 100 pops we'll be giving away, we'll  also accord you the pleasure of trying Strawberry-Basil, Banana with burnt Caramel and Sea-Salt, and Chocolate Puddin' Cabernet ( The grown-up version of " Chocolate Puddin"), for an affordable price. 

Check out what Doof Kids are up to and we'll see you on May 22nd! 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

We're hiring...

Cranky Boots Cold Confections is looking for a skilled, on-call part-time prep cook to help us in the busy month of June.

We are looking for someone who/is:
-Understands and adheres to food safety requirements.
-Classically trained at a recognized Culinary School or has a three year minimum background in the food industry at a respectable place.
-Passionate about Food Justice, Community, Slow Foods and Food in general.
-Knows or wants to know more about the food truck/ cart business that is happening in The Bay Area.
-Committed to organic, local, and sustainable living and eating.
-Professional and responsible with both grand and small tasks (shows up on time, reliable, doesn't cut corners, passionate about your work, etc).
-Has a good sense of humor/ personable.

If interested please reply with a cover letter, professional resume and references. ( References should be from the following: 1 personal non-family related, 1 community oriented, and 1 employer reference).

Women and People of Color are encouraged to apply!

15 an hour+ possible bonus.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Stop. Collaborate and Listen...

Contrary to this post's title, we haven't sold any pops to Robert Van Winkle; mainly because we don't want any trouble with Suge Knight--- other reasons being that good Ole Vanilla has never approached our cart, but that minor detail is besides the point.  We have, however,  decided to work with  a co-op  infinitely cooler, though they have never appeared in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Secret of the Ooze: Mandela Market (

Cranky Boots will work with Mandela Market by purchasing the majority of our ingredients and organic produce from them directly.  We have always financially supported local farmers and purchased our produce directly from farmers. However, Aland and I wanted to hone in our our efforts to support community in a more holistic way, and support not only farmers but local 510/ East Bay Area residents. In order to make our goal a reality, we decided to meet with the beautiful people of Mandela and see what could be done.

Though there were several great ways for us to get involved, Cranky Boots felt the best and most effective way to get involved was putting our money where our mouth is. Basically, we purchase our goods from Mandela Market, which is a local not for profit organization that works with local residents, family farmers, community-based businesses and co-ops to improve health, create wealth, and build the assets of low-income communities. The wealth creation lies in the fact that all the owners of Mandela Foods are low-income people from West Oakland that now have an ownership opportunity instead of just a job. Mandela purchases their fresh produce from a network of about 16 local and  small-mid size sustainable farmers who are adamant about cultivating both organic and pesticide free produce. By purchasing from them, we not only help to secure the Owner's stock in their co-op, but we support local farmers and their families and help to encourage healthy eating where options can be rather lacking. 

Yeah, see... how it works see, is like so, see: you don't have to be a small business buying fruit on a large scale to help out. Shop at Mandela Foods Cooperative for your grocery needs, instead of spending your Whole paycheck at other places of equal quality. They have a full service store that has meat, dairy, produce, snacks, prepared foods, and bulk grains and beans and you're helping out Oakland and her residents. Everyone wins and that's how it should be!

And while we're on the subject of throw backs,remember,kids:

Friday, April 15, 2011

Surprise, Surprise!

I am the worst person at keeping surprises. Aland and my sister Yuri both beg me NOT to tell them what I got them for either their birthdays or Christmas. I just get so excited and I have to share.  This year, Aland will be 30 in May, which is a monumental age, and I told him what I got him. Sigh. I just can't keep surprises. With all that said, it is with honor that I tell you this surprise ("honor," because it took some coercing and bribing from Aland, but  I kept my mouth shut until the release date). 

Remember back when we were talking about our " Community Line?" Well, we left out a lovely piece of the story. The new flavors have new packaging!  (Someone blow a kazoo!) What?  That's not so exciting?  Fine. I'll elaborate. The new pops come in the bonafide form of a push-up pop and will be introduced in May at Doof-a-Palooza (

You heard it right here, folks: Cranky Boots will be serving push-up pops in places of community, like bars, cafes, and local stores. We will also be helping 100 kids make their choice of either Chocolate Puddin' ( No Cabernet in this one) or Frutti Tutti Pop Xplosion ( AKA Hibiscus Pineapple Limeade with our own variation of Pop Rocks)  push-up pops at Doof-a-Palooza, for free. Make sure you come!

The push-up mold is not recycable, unfortunately BUT it is re-usable, which is one of the reasons why we are only selling/giving them in places where people would be more apt to take them home and make their own.

Here's the flavors they come in:
-Strawberry Basil
-Banana w/ burnt Caramel and Sea-Salt
-Hibiscus Pineapple Limeade ( AKA Frutti Tutti)
-Grapefruit and Cream
-Chocolate Puddin' Cabernet
-Blackberrry with Black Sesames and Yuzu ( Oops, I told another surprise! Stay tuned).
-Figs with Goat Yogurt and a Balsamic Gastrique
-Pumpkin Float ( Imagine if homemade Root beer  married A la mode Pumpkin Pie)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Advice for doing your own thang, tha-thang, thang, thang:

Step 1: Make Aland's face, shown here, often. 
     We are excited to announce that East Bay Edible picked up an article about us! However, this blog isn't really about that, Aland ( pronounced: eh-lahnd) wants to write about that anyway, because Rob is one of his BFF's. (I think they have matching brass knuckles. Aland has the " BF," portion and Rob has the " Forever," portion to officiate this sacred bond.  They also have a clubhouse in which, I'm never allowed).  Anyway, I'm only mentioning it because we had to answer a list of questions and from there, Rob wrote an article about us. My favorite question didn't make it into the printed version of the article ( someone please play me the world's smallest violin), and so I thought I'd write about it here. 
     The question was, " What advice would you give to young food entrepreneurs who want to follow your path or create their own?" And there are a lot of obvious answers to that question; anyone who has been doing the whole creating for capital for an nth of a second longer than us,could answer waay better than us. Obviously, the creator needs to be passionate about their product. Obviously, the creator should fill a need. Obviously, the   creator should research their product, their market, etc. etc. etc, but there are a couple of things I see people in my generation shying away from, and I think they're crucial to a successful business, (I'd love to hear your feedback on what you other young entrepreneurs deem mandatory for start-up) here's what works for us: 

-Contrary to popular belief,business is not  always about the bottom dollar, but is ALWAYS about the people. We  think it's important to keep in mind that the customer may not always be right, but the customer is always someone's mother, father, sister, brother, etc and should be treated with such respect, even if we don't agree with them or can't do exactly what they want us to do.

-Creativity is not always about more, being esoteric or being obscure. Despite what everyone around us may be doing, we're not pressured  to over gild the lily. Something extremely well made and simple is more. Bakesale Betty's has a line out the door, and though some people are there for their scrumptious cookies, most people are there for that sinful, oooh-mommmaaa Chicken Sandwich. One of my best friends drove all the way from San Diego on limited time, with 3 of her five kids and spent a good 30 minutes in line for one of them bad boys.  Our Hibiscus Pineapple Limeade has four ingredients: Organic Pineapple, Organic Lime, Organic Cane Sugar, and Hibiscus; it sells out quickly. Creativity can be creative without "more," being esoteric, or it being obscure. 
-Rely on help and critiques from others.There are people who have been doing things way longer then we've been alive and are amazing at what they do. We are not  ashamed to ask for their advice or help. Aland hates for me to throw a pop away,but if it's crap, it's crap. Not only do we set high standards for ourselves as a business, but we rely on the honest critiques of others.  Not everyone is going to like our product, because they have their own set of individual taste buds. However, no one can refute that our pops are well-made, fresh, and gourmet. As much as we'd like to give ourselves credit for being perfect, honestly it's been our friends, family and guinea pigs who have helped us to present our followers with an excellent product.

- Hang around people who are passionate about what they do, and amazing at it. They don't have to be fellow foodies, maybe they're Dancers or Finance Officers. Hang around people who are the best at what they do, it honestly rubs off on you and redefines standards and makes networking and brainstorming adventurous, fun, and exciting. 

- REST. When we're off, we're off, so that when we need to be on, we're on and crackin'.  Aland and I refuse to mix business and pleasure. Meaning, if we're on a date, I don't talk to him about the labels that need to be made, but I focus on enjoying our time together---this rule has really kept us sane. 

What about you guys? What advice would you give young start-ups? 

Sunday, March 13, 2011


I made the mistake of watching TLC's  "Toddlers and Tiaras," a couple of weeks ago while exercising, and outside of my nerd alert  Sally Jesse Raphael glasses that are taped in the middle, that  show was the best form of birth control I have ever come across. I am by no means an advocate of violence, but I seriously wanted to shake the parents in this show. Somehow, they had all managed to create the most narcissistic human beings I have ever laid eyes on in my life:

       Wait for it, she's going to spit-up pea soup any second now...  

And since we can't shake parents and we don't want to be hypocrites by writing about how great we are, we have decided  to do our part in ridding the world of narcissism by debuting another small business: CASA MURRIGUEZ! (We utterly adore this woman!)

We first met Sharon (the owner), at Bizarre Bazaar in the city, over Christmas. We loved her stuff immediately (of course, it didn't hurt that she was one of the few Oakland businesses representin', and we were literally neighbors.) We bought a handful of things---mainly postcards and gift tags and fought over them all the way home. In fact, we loved her stuff so much that after Aland and I wrapped our Christmas presents, we fought over which gift tags would grace what gifts.(I even made Aland give me back the gift tag pictured, after he opened his gift).

Fast Forward, a few weeks later: tired of people asking us if we had a card, we met with Sharon. We asked her to customize our business cards, she did, and this picture does not do her work justice. I don't know all of the technical names and details, but I do know that they are made in the same manner as her gift cards. Honestly, we could not be happier with how they turned out---they are amazingly fresh-to-def and have really helped to take our business to the next level. Several of our clients and accounts have commented on how lovely our business cards are,and we couldn't agree more. Outside of paper products, Casa M does really creative housewares, which are not only environmentally sustainable, but beyond stylish and affordable. All of her " retro-whimsy" designs are drawn by hand, and then she does her viola-magic to put them on fabric, material, etc. etc. 

All that to say, you guys should really check her out, she's worth it: us, and maybe she'll give you a high five or something).

Who knows, folks? She might even be able to customize some Lil' Bebe kid's "Ni-Ni," if that's what you need...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Momma, can I have some money?

My neighborhood
Do you remember the days when you were playing with your little hooligan friends outside, doing things you probably weren't supposed to, like throwing rocks at cars driving by? Okay, maybe that was just me. I remember the summer heat beating down in The Town, the tarmac reflecting the equal heat back up at me, and having beads of sweat run down my hairless little armpits. Then out of the blue, my friends and I  would hear the comforting jingle of the neighborhood Ice Cream Truck. Some of us would be financially prepared, others would have to drop their rocks or sticks and break for home as fast as our  little feet could take us. I was always that kid.  I remember running in the house, slamming the screen door and screaming at the top of my lungs, " Hurry Momma, I need a dollar for the Ice Cream Truck!!"  Sometimes, a dollar was yielded, other times, she wouldn't even be there, and I would have to scramble for the couch cushions in need of that shiny nickle.  

...." Please.." I would plead, as I flipped each couch cushion over.  Please... "  YES!" 

Sadly, some  of the gang wouldn't return outside, others you could hear their change bouncing in their pockets on their walk back and the anticipation would build, as we listened to the truck scour the peripheral blocks. We stood,  just waiting for that old beat up Dodge covered in stickers to show its grill.  " Hell Ya!" We'd yell in joy, as the truck rounded the corner and  we bolted towards it to form a line.  Long-legged Trelis always managed to  get to it first, with us pushing and shoving behind him. Everybody had their favorites, Levi would always go for the " Ninja Turtle Pop," with the bubble gum eyes, Howie loved the Strawberry Shortcake, and Anthony, I don't even remember what he liked, all I remember was that he was MC Hammer's cousin; myself, I was always an Orange-Creamsicle kinda boy.  

I loved me some Orange-Creamsicle and I couldn't wait to get to that perfect marriage of cream and fake orange.  I'd savor every bite, as it dribbled down my arm, wipe my chin, and resume my shenanigans.

And so, in memory of my childhood nostalgia, I  bring to  you (Amanda helped),  a beautiful pairing of Grapefruit and cream.  It is simply made with delicious and organic B& J Grapefruit,  and finished with our version of " cream," which is packed with Pro-biotics. Honestly, it's so good, it'll make you wanna throw a rock at a car.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Origin of the Popsicle...

George, Age 4 in " Oakwind."
When asked what tongues are for, Georgie from " Oakwind," unequivocally replies, " For licking Popsicles Cold Confections, silly."  And of course, you are silly if you don't think George is right, at least about Cold confections. I once asked him the winning numbers to the lottery, and he replied with  "Danna, let's play trains."  

Nevertheless, George has an unmatched blood-brotherly connection  with this deliciously good treat. He knows why God created the tongue, and he also knows that like him, cold confections are from Oakland. It has tickled our fancy for quite some time  to know that the birthplace of the " Eppsicle," (later to be called the "Popsicle") is Oakland, CA.  Of course, we are the birthplace of other great people, places, and things: 

-Julia Morgan
-The Black Panthers
-The Wave 
-Gettin' Hyphy 
-MC Hammer, Goapele, Digital Underground and other great musicians... 
-Rocky Road Ice cream and the Mai Tai 

...But the " Popsicle," whodda thunk it?  

The story goes a little something like this: 

At the ripe age of eleven, Frank Epperson left a glass of lemonade outside with a stick in it. Why, there was a stick in his lemonade? The world may never know, but I will point out two things: 1.) He was eleven. 2.) He was an eleven year old boy.  You can file that under, " mystery solved." Anywho,where was I?   Overnight, the lemonade froze  and dear ol' Franky licked the stick and found it to taste good. Twenty something years later, he applied for a patent for something described along the lines of, " a frozen treat on a stick." (Is it just me, or does Franky come off as the overly rational type?)  Later, his children,  with an ounce of creativity,  re-named it the  "Popsicle," and even later still,  the rights were sold to a company in our Sister City named Good Humor. 

The End ? 

No, not really...

106 years later, we're happy to bring  this delicious cold confection back home; so much so, that one of our mainstay flavors, "Peach Lemonade", which was created to be kid friendly and made with: Woodleaf Farm Organic Peaches, Ginger, Meyer Lemons and Organic Cane Sugar is dedicated to the Godfather, himself, Frank Epperson.

P.S. The word " Popsicle," is much like the words " Xerox, Band-aid, Crayon, Q-tip and the newest, Urban Homesteading..."  meaning, don't use them to describe your product, or your pants might be sued right off of your body.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Pop Recipe

Y'all the weather deities have been good to us this month, you should honor them with a  Tangerine Pudding Pop! Guess what? They're vegan, too!

Yields: 6-8, 3 oz Pops.
What you'll need: 
Aland's offering to the Bill Cosby gods...
  • 1 Cup Organic Cane Sugar or organic powdered sugar with tapioca cornstarch.
  • 1/3 teaspoon Tangerine zest or citrus of your choice( Lime not recommended)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
  • 1/3 teaspoon of hydrated saffron (optional) 
  • 1 20 oz container of silken tofu (We like Hodo Soy, and you can find it at Berkeley Farmer's Market or at Berkeley Bowl but Mori-Nu Firm Silken works well, too*).
  • 3/4 Cup of coconut milk or Earth balance soy free " butter"* works well too.
  • 1 Cup of Freshly squeezed Tangerine juice or Citrus of your choice (again, no lime).

In medium saucepan combine coconut milk, cane sugar, tangerine zest, salt, saffron, tangerine juice and vanilla extract.  Whisk and bring to a boil over high heat.  Be quick and reduce your mixture to a simmer, KEEP WHISKING,  and let it simmer for about 45 seconds to a minute.

Pour your mixture into a blender with your tofu and blend until smooth. 

Pour your mixture into a non-metal bowl (acid + metal= not good), cover and toss that bad boy in the fridge for about 1-3 hours. 

Once your mixture has completely cooled, you can pour them into your pop mold and let them freeze for at least 6 hours.

Voila! Enjoy! 

We encourage experiments. Try additional spices that go well with citrus or different citruses,'s about Meyer's Lemon or Blood Oranges? The world is your oyster kid! Tell us how they turn out!

* Bryant Terry's " Vegan Soul Kitchen," recommends Mori Nu Silken. 

* If you choose to use the butter, do not boil, just melt it and let the sugar dissolve.

Friday, February 4, 2011

New Pops

Berkeley Farmer's Market
Aland and I have been guilty of  mentioning the word "community," here and there.  We understand that  there's always the risk within the American-English language of negative over-exposure. When  the "here and there" happens without responsibility over one's words, words like: "eco-friendly," "carbon footprint," "epic,"and " awesome" meet the unfortunate fate of over-exposure.  In the same breath, I can use the adjective " awesome," to describe my ability to parallel park (which Aland  would also describe as "awesome-ly terrible"), or Martin Luther King Jr.'s grace to lead a movement that changed American History. The word, " awesome,"  used to mean something and was reserved for truly awe inspiring moments like The Civil Rights Movement, but this is no longer the case.  The word, " community," cannot afford to meet this fate; a way of prevention is to start with honest and true conversations, which are shared from the heart.

These new pops are our conversation shared from the heart.
Aland buying vegan friendly...
Our Community Line of pops is an attempt to not only foster, but  sustain community, regardless of whom your community consists. One of the reasons why we have decided to sell this line exclusively to businesses functioning within a community setting is because we want to increase this line's chance of actually engaging people. Our hope is that while you eat these pops,they will center you around a table and  create opportunity to  start conversations, talk about pleasant childhood memories, new foodie experiences or inspire you in your own form of creating.

At the moment, we are not at liberty to  share everything regarding our new line. However, we do feel it prudent and fair to introduce to you  1  of the 8 new items that  you will be able to find in places around San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley in as early as May. ( Don't worry, we'll introduce the  rest of the New Pop gang very soon).

" Bill Cosby" here, helped himself...
So, without further ado, say hello to our little friend:  Chocolate Puddin' Cabernet. Chocolate Puddin' Cabernet is 100% organic, vegan, and gluten free. It is perfectly balanced and velvety smooth with hints of blackberry, smoke, black pepper, rose petals, currants, and of course, yummy dark chocolate.
It is delicious!