Fresh strawberries are here, and it is hard to pass them by at the store. A granita is a perfect way to use up all those little gems even as they start to over ripen – you’re going to be blending them to oblivion, so appearances don’t really matter here. Check out last week's post to see how to treat berries as soon as you get them home to help them last longer. A granita is an Italian ice dessert with a coarse texture, and it is incredibly simple to make. From whole strawberries to frozen goodness only takes about two or two and a half hours, and no cooking or rock salt is required (bonus!).
Strawberry slices are placed in a blender or food processor with sugar, water, lemon juice and zest, and just a pinch of salt. Once smooth, the mixture is poured into a 9x13 baking dish and frozen.
The trick to getting the perfect texture (that looks like crushed granite) is to scrape the granita throughout the freezing process, about every 30 minutes until ready. Once the right consistency is achieved, it can be covered and left alone until serving.
This strawberry lemon granita tastes just like a Lemonberry Slush from Sonic (my all-time favorite slush). The recipe can be served on its own or dressed up for cocktail hour by spooning into a wine or martini glass and pouring champagne, vodka, or lemonchello on top. It is light and refreshing; a perfect summer treat.
Click on the recipe title below for a PDF version.
Strawberry Lemon Granita
2 pound (about 6 cups) hulled, sliced strawberries
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Zest from one medium to large lemon
Pinch of salt
Additional strawberries, lemon strips, or mint to garnish
Place all ingredients in blender or food processor. Blend until smooth, about 1 minute. Pour into a 9x13 baking dish, and place uncovered in the freezer until mixture starts to freeze around edges, about 45 minutes. Stir icy portions from the edge into the center of the granita using a fork. Continue to freeze and stir mixture every 30 minutes until the granita is light with fluffy, separate ice crystals.
About 8 cups
Did you try this one out? Let me know how it turned out for you, or leave a comment if you have any questions, or suggestions for other recipes you would like to see me try out.
It's hard to find that perfect container of strawberries at the store. You look through all sides of that see through container, find no evidence of anything off, and as soon as you get home, it seems half of them are all a mushy mess. They turn bad after just a day or two so it's easier to just use frozen sometimes.
I want to share a trick I found somewhere online awhile back that lengthens the shelf life of these sweet little orbs because nothing beats a fresh strawberry.
Fill a large bowl with water and add a few tablespoons of white vinegar (3 or 4 maybe?, I just eyeball it). Sort through the berries and toss the ones that are too far gone. A little bruise is ok, but if there serious squishy-ness or mold, get rid of it!
Let your berries soak for a few minutes on each side and then air dry. That's it. Easy peasy. Once dry, I store mine in a Green Bag in the fridge, and they last for a week or more without any of those little bruises getting worse.
There is no vinegar taste to the food at all, but occasionally I can smell it on my hands after eating the fruit. I have use this vinegar soak on mostly berries and grapes, but it also brings limp lettuce back to life for another day or so.
Next week I'll show you what I did with these crimson delights.
Have you tried this method on other types of fruit? Leave a comment, and let me know how it worked for you.
Hi! I'm Melisa
I am the owner, baker, designer, decorator and all around 'one woman show' of Sweet By Design, a home based, custom cake bakery which is located just outside of Dallas, Texas. I hope to shed a little light on the wedding and event industry and make your day a little sweeter!
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