Growing up in a predominately Puerto Rican neighborhood in Connecticut, the kids on my block looked forward to the summer months and one special treat from two of our neighbors named Doña Guillermina and Doña Minga (both have passed). The tasty treats I am talking about are called Limbers. Here is a little history of how the limber got its name. Thanks to my friend Zuleyka (@dr_zu) for the information.
A neighborhood treat
It was kind of a quiet battle between the ladies regarding who made the best limbers. If you could not find your favorite flavor ready at Doña Guillermina’s house, you could go to Doña Minga’s house. Some of the flavors sold were Cherry, Grape, Lemon, Orange, Tamarind, and Coco. I remember the regular flavors at Doña Guillermina’s were 25cents while the Coco was 35cents. Yes the coconut flavor was more expensive because there were more steps to making this delectable treat. Since their passing, Don Ignacio who was Doña Guillermina’s husband still makes these treats for the kids in the neighborhood. He should be starting production any day now.
Make it as natural as possible
If you want a healthy treat that is not filled with lots of sugar, your best bet is to get the fresh fruit and make the juice from scratch. I did this with Tamarind pods. (I used to be able to pick them from a tree across the street from my old house) I soaked the pods in water overnight. Once the pulp falls of the pit, strain the tamarind flavored water, add brown sugar to the water, pour into plastic cups or ice trays, and freeze overnight.
You can also buy frozen juice like the Suiza brand in Puerto Rico or Goya in the states that you can add water and pour them into re-usable trays or pop holders for a treat on hot days.
I found this neat little holder to make five limbers that is eco-friendly because it can be re-used over and over again.
What flavor limber do you like best?
I asked my friends on Facebook what their favorite limbers were (mine was Coco) and here is what they said:
Lizvette: Coco Mines too, now I want a limber..LOL
Zuleyka: Limon. Se me olvido mi amor por el de piña pero con pedazos de la fruta adentro…Ay que rico!
Hector: Coconut from East Main St. Bridgeport
Nancy : Tamarindo y Como dice la Gran Diva leche de carnation!
Chenille Cherry or Parcha
Antonia: Parcha y Coco
Carmen: I like leche de carnation con canela y azucar
Rick: Coco or Tamarindo
Have you ever tried this tasty treat while visiting Puerto Rico? What is your favorite flavor?