LIMBER’S HISTORY AND 4 RECIPES



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LIMBER’S HISTORY AND 4 RECIPES

Puerto Rican healthy recipes:  Food of Puerto Rico (Platos de Puerto Rico)

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by Margarita Persico

Limber is like an Italian icy, but with a tropical flair according to the natural fruit flavor. The icy treat got its unusual name in honor of Charles A. Lindbergh, the first pilot to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. When Lindbergh flew alone to Puerto Rico on his 26th birthday, on February 4, 1928, he was offered a frozen fruit juice. He enjoyed it and since then the locals started freezing the juice and called it Limber in honor of the man who inspired this much loved frozen treat.

When I was a little girl during my vacations to Puerto Rico to visit family I noticed that in many neighborhoods there were ladies who from their kitchen or living room sold “limbers” to make extra money to help with home expenses. Limber was the most refreshing treat I had during the hot Caribbean summer vacations.

I played and ran around in the sweltering hot Caribbean days during my visits to grandma Celeste who lived at a costal neighborhood in Ponce. There was no air conditioning at grandma Celeste’s home. Sucking on a limber “Popsicle” was like being in paradise. The creamy coconut melted in my mouth as the icicles liquefied. And though I didn’t know then why I loved the lemon and pineapple limbers, it helped my digestion, and the peanut butter limber gave me the much needed protein to continue playing. But one thing I always knew limbers did for me and it still does for the eternal little girl in me, it brings a smile to my lips.

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The ladies that sold limber in Puerto Rico made the limbers from local fruits picked from their own back yards. Mango limbers came from the huge mango trees that perhaps shaded and cooled their home and backyard giving them the sweet fragrant fruit, the mango, loaded with vitamins and fiber fruit that also afford them the opportunity to make the much needed extra money. They made the limber by blending or mixing the fruits and freezing the juices in ice cube trays or cups. They sold the limber ice cubes for .05 cents and the cups for about .50 cents. I particularly enjoyed the mango, coconut, peanut butter, pineapple and lemon limbers. I remember one lady who sold peanut butter limber, which was my favorite.

When I recently asked my cousin Lucy, via Facebook, about limber, she answered:

“That’s what I’m eating now! 3:17 p.m. I make them at home from the backyard’s mango tree and add lemon and honey,” says Lucy. She says that when she was little, though our grandmother Tina would not allow it, she would sneak out on her bike and sell limber for .05 cents. “Then Marta, a neighbor, made them in small cups and sold for .25 cents, later she started doing them in larger cups, 8 ounces, and sold for .50 [cents],” remembered Lucy.

Below are several limber recipes such as the healthy Coconut and Pineapple Limbers, which are  cholesterol and diary-free (no milk, no condensed milk), and without sacrificing taste. Enjoy!  ¡Buen provecho!

Recipes by/Recetas por Margarita @ thehealthydish.com

Limbers de Puerto Rico -

Puerto Rican Natural Icy Pops

Limber Banner 2 LIMBER’S HISTORY AND 4 RECIPES Limbers de Puerto Rico

Coconut and Pineapple Limber (Limber de Coco y Piña)

  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • ½ cup Cream of coconut or coconut milk
  • 1-tablespoon sweetener of choice to taste. May use agave, brown sugar, honey, maple, Stevia or none (optional)

Mix all ingredients and freeze in plastic cup or container of choice. If you place in popsicles it might yield 4 popsicles depending on the size.

Coconut Limber (Limber de Coco)

  • 1 cup Cream of coconut or coconut milk
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon  (optional)
  • 1-tablespoon sweetener of choice to taste. May use agave, brown sugar, honey, maple, Stevia or none (optional)

Mix all ingredients, if using sweetener such as Stevia, might need less (read Stevia label for serving), and freeze in plastic cup or container of choice. If you place in popsicles mold it might yield 4 – 6 popsicles depending on the size.

Pineapple Limber (Limber de Piña)

  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • ½ cup pineapple chunks (fresh or frozen)
  •  Sweetener of choice to taste. May use agave, brown sugar, honey, maple, Stevia or none (optional)

Mix all ingredients, if using sweetener such as Stevia, might need less (read Stevia label for serving), and freeze in plastic cup or container of choice. If you place in popsicles it might yield 4 popsicles depending on the size.

Lucy’s Mango Limber (Limber de Mango)

  • 2 mangos, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Lime, juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon Honey

Mix all ingredients, if using sweetener such as Stevia, might need less (read Stevia label for serving), and freeze in plastic cup or container of choice. If you place in popsicles it might yield 4 popsicles depending on the size.

Raspberry and Mango Limber (Limber de Frambuesa y Mango)

  • ½ cup raspberry
  • ½ cup mango
  • ½ cup water
  • 1-tablespoon sweetener of choice to taste. May use agave, brown sugar, honey, maple, Stevia or none (optional)

Mix all ingredients, if using sweetener such as Stevia, might need less (read Stevia label for serving), and freeze in container. If you place in popsicles it might yield 4 popsicles depending on the size.

Anyone has a peanut butter limber recipe? Please share in comment below. Thank you!

Tools: ice trays, plastic cups or popsicle molds. Make sure they are BPA free.

More healthy dessert recipes: http://www.thehealthydish.com/category/recipes/dessert-recipes/

Puerto Rican healthy recipes:  Food of Puerto Rico (Platos de Puerto Rico)

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Banner and photo: Margarita Persico

Multiple color limbers: http://s85.photobucket.com/profile/Mollex

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8 comments for “LIMBER’S HISTORY AND 4 RECIPES

  1. Betsy Martinez
    March 30, 2014 at 7:34 PM

    Love this article. I have always been passionate about making limber. Thank you for sharing.

    • March 30, 2014 at 9:31 PM

      You are welcome, Betsy! It was fun recalling and writing about this experience. Enjoy!

  2. July 27, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    You are welcome! Enjoy!

  3. Eileen
    May 29, 2013 at 5:40 PM

    Thanks for sharing! Going to make the coco, yummy. xoxo

    • March 29, 2014 at 2:00 PM

      How did it come out, Eileen? Coconut and peanuts were my favorite limbers.

  4. May 2, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    Sugar also contributes to the moistness of desserts and their tenderness. The flour or starch component in most desserts serves as a protein and gives the dessert structure. Different flours such as All-Purpose Flour or Pastry Flour provide a less rigid gluten network and therefore a different texture. Along with flour desserts may contain a dairy product.,`

    Adieu

  5. ccarmen
    March 18, 2013 at 12:35 PM

    than you for sharing

    • March 29, 2014 at 2:02 PM

      Carmen, my pleasure, my joy! A little piece of my heritage and childhood.
      Enjoy!

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