Ashley Rouse began making jam out of her teeny apartment in Charlotte, North Carolina, eschewing traditional flavors for thrilling combinations and ingredients that are not often found in the breakfast spread. Her passion for jam morphed into an online business, Trade Street Jam Co., where Ashley and her team proffer a wide selection of small-batch jam that can be used for more than just slathering a wedge of toast with. This Black-owned business’s jam can be swirled into cocktails, salad dressings, BBQ sauces, marinades, pan sauces, and so much more.
The jams, which are all vegan, are made by hand, fruit slowly cooked down to form a thick spread, with little added sugar and without pectin and preservatives. Six flavors are available: strawberry, chipotle & fig; smoked yellow peach; plum & rose; blueberry, lemon, basil; sour cherry ginger; and blackberry mulled Merlot.
All jams can be purchased online and are sold at a number of small businesses across the country, in states like New York, Michigan, Tennessee, and California. And once you’ve gotten a hold of one (or two, or three) of Trade Street’s jams, you’ll want to repurpose them into Ashley’s recipe for blueberry cheesecake popsicles—the perfect antidote to a hot summer day.
These popsicles boast a two-toned mixture of blueberries and cheesecake, bound by a scoop of the blueberry, lemon, and basil jam, a brick of cream cheese, and plenty of lemon juice and sugar. Each portion should be separately blitzed in a blender, poured into popsicle molds, and then slipped into the freezer. They’re ready to go after an overnight stint in the freezer, a refreshing sweet you’ll want to immediately reach for upon emerging from the pool all summer long.
- Blueberry mixture:
- 1 cup blueberries
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup Blueberry Lemon Basil Jam
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/3 cup water
- Cheesecake mixture:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 cup sugar
- Add ingredients for the blueberry mixture to a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes. Pour into a blender and purée. Let cool completely.
- Wash out the blender and add ingredients for the cheesecake layer. Blend until smooth.
- Divide blueberry mixture between 8-10 popsicle molds.
- Pour cheesecake mixture on top of blueberry mix in each mold. Cover molds with mold top. Insert wooden popsicle sticks. Place into the freezer and freeze overnight.