Making granita is ridiculously simple, but it is not a quick dessert. If you have a few hours on a weekend afternoon to occasionally stir the slowly freezing concoction, you will be greatly rewarded.
We hung out with Abby and Jon recently and they shared a box of their beloved Kishu Mandarins with us. These juicy tangerines from Ojai are so good simply peeled and popped into your mouth like candy; mixed with a little cardamom, blood orange, and a splash of rum, they made a delicious granita.
- 3 blood oranges
- 2 dozen Kishu or other sweet and juicy tangerines
- 3 cardamom pods, slightly crushed so the flavor releases easily
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon rum
Squeeze citrus until you have 2 cups of juice.
In a heavy bottomed sauce pan, stir citrus juice, sugar, cardamom, and rum. Over high heat, dissolve sugar, stirring constantly. When sugar has dissolved, remove from heat. After letting the liquid sit for 15 minutes, strain out cardamom pods and seeds. Cool completely, even overnight if you don't yet have time to slowly freeze the granita.
Freezing: Pour liquid into shallow baking pan. Freeze 30 minutes. Remove from freezer and stir to break up any frozen bits. Make sure to scrape the edges of the pan, this is where the freezing begins.
Continue to freeze for 20-30 minute intervals. Stir. Freeze again. After two to three hours of freezing and stirring, your granita will be ready to eat.
Once you are ready to eat the granita, remove from freezer and serve immediately. It melts quickly.
We have made this granita repeatedly in the past few weeks and served it with a dollop of whipped cream, a little slice of brownie, or a few salted chocolate shortbread. The additions are decadently delicious, yet in truth the granita can easily hold its own as a fresh and bright end to a meal.
Makes 1 pint