The sugar water that you make for this recipe is really a simple syrup. It is wonderful to flavor teas or as the base for lemonade. The ratio is always 2:1 so feel free to make a larger batch than specified below and store the remainder in your refrigerator. Serve granitas in clear glasses so you can see the beautiful glittering ice crystals.
- Prep Time
- 1 cup sugar
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 3-4 pounds ripe seedless watermelon, honeydew or cantaloupe
- 1⁄2 bunch fresh mint, stems discarded, plus extra for garnish
1. Place the sugar and water into a small pot. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes. remove from heat and cool completely to room temperature.
2. Remove the rind from the watermelon or other melon and discard. Chop the flesh into 1 1⁄2-inch chunks. Purée the melon in a blender, in batches if necessary, until smooth. Strain through a mesh sieve into a large bowl and discard the pulp. You should have 4 cups melon juice. Add 1⁄3 cup of the prepared sugar water to the melon juice. You will have extra sugar water for another use.
3. Pour the mixture into a large shallow non-reactive pan, like glass or stainless steel; aluminum will react with the fruit acids and leave a metallic taste in the granita. The larger and shallower the pan, the larger the surface area will be and the granita will freeze more quickly. Just make sure it fits comfortably in your freezer so the mixture doesn’t spill. Cover with plastic wrap. Place into the freezer. Stir and scrape with a fork every 30 minutes. Be sure to scrape ice crystals off the sides and into the middle of the pan, until too frozen to stir, between 3-4 hours.
4. Put mint and 1⁄4 cup of the remaining sugar water into blender and purée until smooth.
5. When mixture is frozen solid, scrape with the tines of a fork, pulling the mixture in rows towards you to make the mixture fluffy with large ice crystals. If too frozen to scrape, leave at room temperature for 10 minutes. Place into serving glasses. Garnish the granitas with a drizzle of the mint syrup and a fresh mint leaf.
Excerpted from Susie Fishbein’s Kosher By Design entertains.
Recipe published in JOY of KOSHER with Jamie Geller Summer 2013. Subscribe Now.