Martha Stewart Living (December 2011)
When we moved into our first apartment together and started cooking in earnest, granita quickly became our go-to, fall-back dessert.
Why? Because it's tasty and impressive -- and unimaginably easy.
If we had friends coming over but didn't have the time or moxie to make an elaborate dessert, we'd throw together some juice, water and sugar, pour it into a glass dish, and freeze it. Then we'd scrape it with a fork and pile it high in an old-school champagne glass, kind of like we did when we made Coffee Granita last year. We loved it and so did guests. (And in truth, a few times we served granita as a dessert before a more substantial dessert.)
These days, we don't make granita nearly as often, mostly because we've either already served it to just about everyone we know or we're trying out a new dessert to share with you. But we still love it, which is why we jumped at the chance to make this Clementine Granita from Martha Stewart Living.
There's nothing particularly unique about the method for making this granita. It's essentially the same as we described above, with the cute twist of serving the chipped ice in hollowed-out clementines. And you know how we love a clementine.
We don't often go in for "cute food," but we do love these little clementine cups. They're adorable and would be fun to serve to kids, but they'd also be beautiful little desserts to serve at the end of a fancy dinner.
This dessert is especially nice here at the height of holiday party season. With the endless tables of puff-pastry this and chocolate-studded that, the idea of a light but delicious dessert is oh so welcome.
Think of it as a holiday palate cleanser.
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours and 40 minutes
Makes 12, Serves 4
12 clementines, plus 12 more for juicing
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 slice (1/2 inch) peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1. Slice the top 1/2 inch off each clementine; reserve. Cut around flesh and scoop out into a sieve set over a bowl; reserve skins and be careful not to tear them. Press flesh to extract juice. Squeeze in juice from tops. (You'll have about 1 cup.) Juice more clementines to yield 2 cups.
2. Moisten clementine skins with some juice or water. Roll skins in 1/4 cup sugar to coat. Freeze until solid, about 2 hours.
3. Bring remaining 1/4 cup sugar, the water, and ginger to a boil in a saucepan, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat. Let stand for 30 minutes; discard ginger. Stir in 2 cups juice and the lemon juice; transfer to a nonreactive 8-inch square baking dish. Freeze until solid, about 3 hours.
4. Scrape granita with a fork to fluff. Spoon granita into clementine "cups." Freeze for 10 minutes before serving.
Make ahead: granita can be frozen for up to 2 days. "Cups" can be frozen for up to 2 days (unfilled) or 1 day (filled).