Strawberry-Basil and Coconut Popsicle Recipe// Arizona food Photographer Nicole Lee

Hi! Lets start there. I wanted to take a moment and reintroduce myself. I’m Nicole. I am a photographer, home cook, Mother, jack  Jill of all trades kind of girl. Last year, I started pursuing photography full time, I had no idea “what” "where" or "how" I was going to get there. Becoming a Photographer that is. Looking back I was quite the hot mess, sometimes I still feel that way ha. But Over the last 6 months I have found some clarity in it all.

When you first start you have a hundred people chiming in your ear, which I am thankful for. They say words like branding, Marketing, Direction, Specialize, Who are you? What are you, how are you going to be successful? What do you charge? Can you do a headstand, then 100 jumping jacks, and snap a shot of me doing one to?

Then you have doe eyed me, blank faced and speechless…queue the crickets please…

I had no idea how to answer any of those questions. I just thought, well I have a camera, I like to take photographs, I like food, and I like people. It is that simple. (But it wasn’t) So many other creatives make it look so simple, truth is I wasted too much time focusing on how to ‘make it' I missed all the key steps to getting there. I just got in the way of myself! I’m sure you have been there.

Then Last April, I ended up taking the most amazing trip out to Seattle and attended the Survival Guide Workshop, by John Keatly. It saved me. I am not kidding around here folks.

He taught us how to market, do business, charge people properly, become a real sustaining brand, and he taught me how to take a risk, to start putting my feet on those stepping-stones. We also had killer food, and pop quizzes. It’s not your average workshop. Plus, I walked away connecting to some supportive friends, some game changers who being the new girl, and they didn’t stomp all over me, they embraced the underdog.

For the last year, I have been able to put myself out there, gain some confidence, say I’m the girl for you, (or not). I’m getting clear on who I am which; in fact you do need to know if you are a creative. What am I willing to say no and yes to, as well as be humble enough to do the odd jobs while I get my feet off the ground.

So where am I going with all this? Well I am saying, If you are struggling creative, don’t give up, figure out what you need to get better at and find someone, anyone, or you tube how to get from here to there. Second, I’m just so freaking excited that all the little steps are coming together.

Now go make some popsicles!!

Strawberry Coconut Popsicle Recipe


Makes 12 Popsicle molds


4 cans full fat coconut milk (chilled in refrigerator)

2 lbs strawberries (fresh or frozen)

3 eggs

1-tablespoon vanilla paste

1 bunch fresh basil

2- 3 cups raw sugar

1 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

2 trays of Popsicle Molds




Clean and Cut the ends of the strawberries, set aside. Measure out the sugar, the vanilla. Open the cans of coconut milk and separate the fat. Measure the fat out to 2 cups. Set aside the coconut water from the cans. Prep the basil, cut off stems and gently chop up.

Put a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat on the stove, place a small tsp. of olive oil, and cook the strawberries, sugar, and lemon juice together. You will want to stir frequently, until all the water comes out of the strawberries. (About 5-10 min) Add in the basil and vanilla paste. Cook for another 5 min.

You know it will be finished when the strawberries aren’t as tart, with a strainer take out the strawberry mixture from the pot, place in a blender and blend until smooth.

Set aside the left over liquid from the mixture.

Put the coconut milk into the pot, add in the strawberries, cook until everything is smooth and no lumps are shown.

Take the strawberry coconut mixture off the heat, stir in the 3 eggs, taste to see if needs more sugar, or strawberry, or even more coconut. You want a smooth creamy strawberry flavor to come through.

Once finished, add your mixture to your molds. Freeze for 6-12 hours depending on your freezer, and enjoy!!













Jacob's Applesauce Recipe

Who doesn’t love applesauce? You can eat it plain, spread it over vanilla ice cream, and add it to yogurt. Add it to baked recipes. The list is endless. My 6 year old came home from school so excited to share he had learned how to make applesauce in his first grade class. He then of course wanted to teach me how to make it right away, so we did.

I would say cooking with my children is something we always have done. Its something I wanted to include them in, and make them feel apart of things. When they were crawling they would be banging on pots and pans in the kitchen while I danced around and cooked. As they got older we started giving them real jobs, stirring a sauce or making the scrambled eggs. Sometimes Jacob (my 6 year old) comes up with his own recipes, for example, peanut butter with honey on rice cakes, or the not so popular, mustard peanut butter sandwiches.

So this applesauce recipe seemed like the perfect thing to add to our recipe book, and do something well just fun together!

Cheers Friends, Happy Cooking!




Jacob’s Applesauce


4lbs apples cored and sliced (about 10 apples)

A mixture of red, yellow and green

½ cup sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon lemon Juice

1-cup water

1-tablespoon vanilla paste (preference only)


In large Dutch oven, bring the cup of water to a simmer, add in the apples, sugar, cinnamon, lemon juice and vanilla. Give it a good mix with a large wooden spoon. Let this simmer until the apples are good and mushy, about 12-20 min. If needs more water add in about a half cup at a time.

Once the apples are good and cooked, remove from heat and blend in a blender or food processer and pulse until combined. The consistency you are looking for is slightly smooth, slightly chunky.

Then transfer mixture to bowls and let completely cool (about 1-2 hours)

When cooled you can store in a container / Mason jar for up to two weeks.

(If it lasts that long!)