Life is a special occasion

Lemon Mint Granita

Granitas are a perfect dessert for the summertime, especially if you live in a hot and humid area like Florida. Smitten Kitchen, a website everyone should know about, recently posted a fantastic entry on lemon mint granitas. This is a simple dessert to make and most of the ingredients already exist in your kitchen! In addition, this can be made ahead of time which is perfect for a dinner party.

  • 4 lemons
  • 4 cups water
  • Sugar, to taste (about 3 tablespoons for a tart lemonade)
  • Handful of fresh mint leaves

  • Directions
  • Clean and wash the lemons.
  • Cut off the top quarter of the lemons and slice a thin bevel off the bottom, so they can stand up straight. 
  • Using a grapefruit knife, carefully remove all of the lemon flesh and juice (working over a bowl ensures you won’t lose any), being careful not to cut through the bottom. 
  • Stand the lemons on a plate or cookie sheet and freeze until solid.

  • Using a food processor (a blender will work as well), toss a handful of washed and dried fresh mint leaves into the work bowl. (Smitten Kitchen used about 25 to 30 leaves from 6 to 9 sprigs). 
  • Add the scooped out lemon flesh and juice, and pulse until mostly pureed. 
  • Let mixture stand for 15 minutes, so the mint releases its flavor, then press the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer to end up with approximately one cup of lemon-mint juice.

  • Stir in the water, then sugar, one tablespoon at a time until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is to your desire level of sweetness. 
  • Pour the mixture into a large roasting pan or baking dish, large enough that the liquid isn’t more than one-inch deep. A 9×13-inch pan is suggested.

  • Freeze for one hour, then remove the mixture and scrape with two forks to break up the ice. (Freezing time may vary). 
  • Return to the freezer and freeze until solid, about 2 to 3 hours, scraping it again with forks every hour or so.
  • When the granita is frozen, rake until glittery. 
  • Scoop into frozen lemon shells.

  • I love granitas and they are always a hit with guests.  But they are not simply reserved for dessert; try a cucumber mint granita served as a palate cleanser; a ginger granita to give you an energy boost; or take the lemon mint granita up a notch by adding Limoncello or making a hibiscus mint granita with rum!  There are endless possibilities to this recipe so have fun incorporating it into your event.

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