Watermelon Granita

18 Jul

Ever since I can remember, summertime is my absolutely FAVORITE time of the year. I lived at our neighborhood pool, where I was on the swim team, later on a lifeguard and swim coach. Watermelon and summer go together like bacon & eggs – and there’s nothing better than eating a slice of juicy watermelon on hot day. And have a seed spittin’ contest. 🙂

I got a good lookin’ melon last week and decided to make it into something different – a granita. What is a granita? It’s Sicilian shaved ice dessert – similar to Italian Ice or Shaved Ice – perfect for a hot summer day! It couldn’t be simpler to make – just needs a little TLC. I’m definitely planning to make it with other fruits. This recipe makes a pretty good amount, so perfect for your next backyard BBQ!Watermelon Granida-007-Edit
INGREDIENTS:

  • 6-8 cups watermelon chunks (seedless or seeded)
  • 1/2 C coconut sugar
  • 1/2 C water
  • juice of 2 limesmint leaves for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

Working in batches, pure watermelon chunks in a food processor or blender until smooth and no chucks are left.

Note: If using a seeded watermelon, strain puree through a sieve to remove those pesky black seeds. Also, the white, softer seeds might show up in the seedless version but no need to worry about straining.

Put the puree into a separate bowl & continue until all watermelon chucks are blended.

In a small sauce pot, heat the water over medium heat.  Once small bubbles appear on the bottom of the pot, add the sugar – no need to bring to a boil, just want it hot enough to melt the sugar. You’re making simple syrup!

Once sugar is dissolved, add simple syrup to the watermelon puree along with the lime juice and stir to combine.

Poor into a 9″ x 13″ casserole dish, cover and place in the freezer.

Here’s where patience and TLC come in.

After an hour in the freezer, pull the mixture out. Using a fork, scrape along the sides (those will likely be starting to freeze) and the middle (which will likely won’t be frozen yet :)). Cover, and place back in the freezer.

Repeat this process about every 30 minutes – 1 hour. The more you scrape the ice mixture, the finer the ice will be – thus, the less you scrap, you’ll have bigger flakes of granita.

After at least 4 hours, and multiple turns of the fork, the granita will be ready!

Serve into bowls, top with fresh mint and enjoy!

 

 

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