Cold watermelon on a hot day is good, but frozen is even better. This recipe makes either a session granita cocktail, or, with the addition of gin and soda a full-fledged happy hour slurpee for grownups is adapted from a non-frozen cocktail recipe from Saveur. Either way, the process for making granita takes just four ingredients, a blender and is mostly hands-off.
Keyword watermelon granita cocktail
Prep Time 10minutes
freezing time 5hours
Total Time 10minutes
Author Lynne Curry
For watermelon granita:
10cups (3 pounds)ripe, seedless watermelon, cubed and seeded
1/2cup (4 ounces)simple syrupsee Recipe Notes
1/2cup (4 ouncesAperol
3tablespoons (1.5 ounces)lime juice
pinch fine sea salt
For individual cocktails:
1 ouncesoda water
Combine the watermelon, simply syrup, Aperol, lime juice and salt in a blender. Puree until very smooth. Taste the mixture and adjust for sweetness by adding more simple syrup or for tartness by adding more lime juice. The flavors will be more muted when frozen, so be sure that the mixture is extremely tasty.
Pour into an 11x17 rimmed baking sheet and skim off any seeds. Freeze for about 4 hours, or until the mixture is nearly completely frozen. Use a bench knife (aka, dough scraper, pastry blade) to chop the mixture into rough chunks. Rotate the pan and continue chopping until the crystals are broken up finely.
Return to the freezer for at least one hour, chopping once again, or until ready to serve. (The granita can be made up to 2 days in advance.)
Bring to room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving. Spoon into serving glasses or dishes and enjoy the granita as is.
To make cocktails. spoon the granita into tall glasses. Add the gin and soda, stir and serve with a lime wedge.
To make a simple syrup: combine equal parts water and granulated sugar in a small saucepan (1 cup water to 1 cup sugar, for example). Bring to a simmer and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Cool to room temperature before using and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.