Don’t forget dessert!
by Brian Ricci
In all the heat of grilling and last minute adjustments and mixing, it’s nice to have a finished, refreshing dessert in your “back pocket.” This should be prepared 1 to 2 days in advance so you can take it off the prep list and move on. Just remember not to actually keep it in your back pocket.
Serves 6 to 8
- 1 pound ripe watermelon, seeds removed
- 1 cup water
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 limes, juiced
- 1 pinch salt
- Purée your watermelon as smooth as you can get it. If it is still lumpy after you’ve blended it, try straining it through a small mesh strainer—the smoother the better.
- Make a simple syrup by combining water and sugar. Heat until the sugar is dissolved and then cool this down. Then add the watermelon liquid, lime juice and a pinch of salt to the syrup.
- Use a wide, shallow, freezer-safe container to hold your granita. Place the container in the freezer, and in 1/2 hour intervals, gently rake the top layer of the mixture with a fork. Over the course of a few hours, you will have a delicious, refreshing granita that resembles snow. This can be kept frozen and covered for 7 to 12 days. Fresher is better, as freezer items will tend to absorb flavor from the freezer.
- Scoop the granita into a chilled serving vessel or into individual chilled glasses and serve immediately. Garnish with fresh mint. This can also be used as an excellent base for a chilled margarita-type cocktail.