Granita al Limone
(Italian lemon ice)
Popular in Sicily and with a rougher texture than sorbetto, the Italian ice called granita is an easy-to-fix palate cleanser or finish for any summer meal. You don't need special equipment or skills to make this lemony sweet. Just a fork and a freezer.
6 to 8 servings
- Water -- 3 cups
- Sugar -- 1 1/2 cups
- Fresh lemon juice -- 1 cup
- Bring 1 cup of the water and the sugar to a boil in a saucepan, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue boiling for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let to cool.
- Stir in the remaining water and lemon juice. Pour the mixture into a glass baking dish and set in the freezer for on or tow hours until it starts to get slushy.
- Stir well with a fork, breaking up any large chunks of ice or ice crystals. Repeat this process every 20 minutes or so until the granita is frozen solid.
- Place scoops in small glasses or dessert bowls and serve.
Let your imagination run free. There are so many options. Here are a few of the more common variations:
- Granita alla Arancia (Orange Granita): 1/4 cup water; 1/2 cup sugar; 2 tablespoons lemon juice; 3 cups of orange juice. Boil the water and sugar only long enough to dissolve the sugar. Stir in the orange lemon juice. Freeze as for lemon granita. Add a couple tablespoons of orange-flavored liqueur for a luxurious twist.
- Granita al Caffè (Coffee Granita): Use 4 cups of strong black coffee or espresso and 1 cup sugar. Boil 1 cup of the coffee with the sugar only long enough to dissolve the sugar, then stir in the remaining coffee. Freeze as for lemon granita. Top with whipped cream. Add a couple tablespoons of coffee-flavored liqueur for an extra special touch.
- Granita di Fragole (Strawberry Granita): 1 cup of water; 3/4 cup sugar; 1 pound strawberries, hulled and pureed; 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Boil the water and sugar as for the lemon granita. Stir in the strawberry puree and lemon juice. Freeze as for lemon granita.