September 2013 // What’s Happening In Dar Magazine //
It’s tangerine season! These little jewels are delicious straight from the tree, but why not try something different?
Popular throughout Italy, the granita is a semi-frozen dessert made from sugary water and fruit juices, served as an alternative to ice cream or sorbet or sometimes mid-course as a palate cleanser. Less creamy than ice cream and more crystalline than a sorbet, it’s an easy and refreshing way to highlight fruit that is in season. For dessert or simply as a midday snack, it’s got a fun side that will appeal to kids and a refined quality suitable for your next dinner party.
yield: 6-8 servings
time: 6 hours (including cooling and freezing times)
level of difficulty: easy
- 125 grams (1/2 cup) water
- 100 grams (1/2 cup) sugar
- 45 grams (2 Tbsp) honey
- 30 ml (2 Tbsp) orange liqueur such as cointreau or triple sec, or other alcohol such as rum or Konyagi
- 800 grams (4 cups) tangerine juice (from approx. 2 dozen tangerines)
- Juice from 1/2 lemon
- Combine water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, add honey and alcohol. Simmer until sugar dissolves and alcohol is evaporated, stirring constantly. Remove from heat to cool.
- When liquid is at room temperature, stir in tangerine juice and lemon. Cover and place in the refrigerator to chill for at least two hours, or overnight.
- When the tangerine concentrate is cold, pour into a large rectangular baking dish and transfer to the freezer. Freeze for one hour. Take dish out and using a fork, scrape the icy top layer, breaking up any larger chunks, and fold into the slushier bottom layer. Make sure to mix in the sides which will be more frozen than the middle.
- Place dish back in the freezer for another hour. Take out again, and repeat the technique of scraping the top and sides into the middle. Place back into the freezer again for another hour.
- Repeat this process 2 or 3 more times until the granita is at a desired consistency – fluffy, icy, and scoop-able. Transfer to a covered container to store in the freezer. The granita will keep for as long as you can refrain from eating it!!
*This recipe requires few ingredients and is very straightforward, letting the tangerine’s citrusy burst shine through. However it does require a half day’s worth of time, if not more – so plan ahead.
*The alcohol helps keep the ice crystals fluffier and less icy, and most of the alcohol content will cook off in the first step. However, if you’re worried about the alcohol, it is fine to omit the ingredient.