Granita provides another opportunity to enjoy watermelon. Photo by Cristina Donnadieu | 21 Club.
Recipe: Watermelon Mint Granita
Refreshing In A Dish Or In A Martini Glass With Vodka
In Italian, granita means granular. It refers to a frozen ice dessert made without an ice cream machine, so the crystals remain prominent. It’s easy to make at home:
A sugar-syrup base, flavored with fruit purée, coffee, herbs and/or wine, is frozen in a baking dish, ice cube tray or similar shallow container. As the crystals on the top of the mixture freeze, they are scraped into a grainy sorbet. (Commercial granitas are frozen in a gelato machine, which produces finer ice crystals.)
This watermelon granita recipe is from Kimberly Bugler, pastry chef at New York’s famed 21 Club. Its popularity proves that you don’t need an elaborate dessert to please elite diners.
Try An Intermezzo. You can also serve the granita as an intermezzo: a palate-cleanser between fish and meat courses (or between a tart or spicy course and the following course).
Drink Your Dessert. For a cocktail dessert or snack, place a scoop of granita in a martini glass. Top with
a shot of vodka (regular or fruit-flavored) or saké, and serve on a service plate with a spoon.
Watermelon Mint Granita Recipe
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 6 cups cubed watermelon (1” cubes), no seeds
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 dozen extra-large mint leaves
- 8 mint sprigs for garnish
- 16 thin watermelon wedges for garnish
A seedless watermelon saves time removing the seeds from the recipe. Photo courtesy Melissas.org.
- Combine sugar and water in a microwaveable container and heat to boiling. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Place in refrigerator to chill. (You can also do this step in a small pot on the stovetop.)
- Place watermelon cubes, lemon juice and chilled syrup in a 2-quart container and process with an immersion blender until liquefied.
- Freeze in shallow baking dish or pan. Halfway through freezing process when the granita is slushy, finely chop the mint leaves. Remove pan from freezer and stir in the mint.
- Place pan back in freezer again, and allow granita to set several hours or overnight.
- To serve, scrape granita with a fork until light and fluffy and scoop into a dish.
- Garnish with watermelon wedges and mint sprigs.
Recipe courtesy 21 Club. Other material © copyright 2005-
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