Let me create a scene that is worth exploring before the hot weather goes away. Consider making a cinematic al fresco dining experience, even if it’s just in the street. There should be a mess of legs underneath the table and a tabletop in which there aren’t all pieces that match but where the conversations flow naturally. In the end, everybody should have a relaxation.
To make this happen, it is essential to follow this easy and versatile recipe for basil and lemon granita. The citrus syrup that is infused with herbs can be prepared in advance and then repurposed into one of three delicious recipes.
The classic Italian-style cold granita doesn’t require an ice cream maker, just a fork and a freezer. Serve it with hollowed-out or frozen lemons, and the appeal can’t be overstated.
When the granita is frozen it, you can drag a fork over it at least once to form frozen shards. It is possible to serve it with frozen lemons, make it into a sorbet, or create a sgroppino drink.
If you’re looking for a lighter, drier dessert–and you have an ice cream maker, you can whip the syrup until it’s frozen, then serve it by scoop. If you want something more boozy, prepare this Venetian cocktail sgroppino, by mixing vodka along with Prosecco over the granita or sorbet.
One of them will be the perfect solution in a day of smoldering. It is recommended to keep this granita within your fridge. So, if your you have guests over and invite you to a party, it will be a surprise.
Lemon and Basil Granita
There are many ways to drink the Granita. This recipe explains exactly how you can make this cold drink, then serve it in lemons that have been hollowed, then turn it into a more smooth sorbet and then mix it all up into Italy’s take on an alcoholic slush The sgroppino, infused with vodka and sparkling. If you’re serving it in lemons, make sure you read step 3 prior to making the granita to make sure that you cut them in the proper way.
Total Time5 Hours (includes chilling)
Actual Time of Use:25 minutes
- 2 cups of water
- 3/4 cup of sugar granulated
- 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1 cup of basil leaves
- 1 cup of fresh lemon juice
- To use the Sgroppino
- 1 ounce vodka
- 3 Ounces chilled Prosecco
- Make the syrup using lemon and basil. In a heavy-bottomed pan on medium-low heat, mix sugar, water, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly in order to dissolve sugar. Remove from the heat. Mix in basil and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Then, strain through a fine mesh filter into a mixing bowl. Make sure to squeeze all the basil liquid and then discard. Stir in lemon juice.
- Make the granita by pouring syrup into an 8-by-9-inch cake pan and then put it in freezer. Allow to freeze for a few minutes, approximately 1 hour. Then move tines of the fork over the mixture to break apart ice crystals. Return to the freezer. Repeat until you have the shard-like, icy granita. The time required will depend on the temperature of your freezer. It should be at minimum 4 hours.
- Serve the granita with chilled lemons (Makes five lemon-based desserts.) Before you make the granita, take tiny slices from the top of each lemon to ensure it’s standing straight. Create a lid by cutting across lemons 1 inch from the top. Drink the juice and keep to make Granita. Scoop any remaining juice and seeds that remain from the lemons. Place lemons on a sheet tray and put in the freezer. Once granita is prepared, make sure to fill the frozen lemons with granita and place lids on the top. Store in the freezer until you are it is ready to serve.
- To make sorbet, mix syrup according to the directions in step 1. Pour into an ice cream maker. Make a churning motion until the sorbet is completely it is completely frozen.
- To make a stropping drink, In an ice-cold flute or coupe, add 1 scoop, the granita, and sorbet. Add 1 three ounces of vodka and 3 inches of chilled Prosecco.