Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Watermelon Granita

When it comes to fruit, I have to admit I'm a tad bit particular picky.  For me to want to eat it, fruit can not be overripe.  A speck of brown on a banana?  It's now in bread or smoothie territory.  I want my grapes to snap as I bite into them and my peaches to still be crisp.  Watermelon is no exception.  If it's getting the least bit squishy, I'm going to start avoiding it.

Conflicting with this snobbery (and perhaps redeeming it!), I loathe to waste food.  There must be some latent Depression-era mindset in me because I try my darndest to convert any scrap of leftovers into something edible.  Oftentimes (fortunately!), out of the sheer effort to not throw something away, a new and exciting dish emerges.  Enter this Watermelon Granita recipe.

This refreshing watermelon slush is a perfect use for some extra (and extra ripe) watermelon.  Aafter trying, you might even start buying watermelon specifically for this purpose!).  By the way, "Granita" is really just a fancy word for slushy.  There is no need for  any special equipment besides a blender or food processor (and a fork) and the hands on time is minimal.  What a delicious way to help  beat the heat that we've all been experiencing so much of these days!

Watermelon Granita
4 cups seedless watermelon, rind removed and cut into chunks
juice of 1 lime (about 2 tablespoons)
1/4 cup granulated sugar

In a blender or food processor, combine watermelon, lime juice and sugar.  Blend until smooth.  Pour liquid into a wide shallow pan (like a 9x13" glass baking dish or one of those extremely helpful reusable plastic storage containers).  It will look a bit foamy on the top.  Place pan in freezer (carefully so you're not cleaning up watermelon juice from your kitchen floor).  Allow to freeze for about an hour.  Remove and using a fork or the back of a spoon, scrape the sides where the mixture is beginning to freeze.  Return to the freezer and repeat every hour or so a couple more times until mixture is completely slushy and shaved (it's also ok to do all the scraping after the mixture is frozen--it's really not too much harder).  Cover with plastic wrap until ready to serve by spooning into glasses.

Adapted from Pioneer Woman's Watermelon Granita

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