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Watermelon Basil Granita With Poblano Granita

Watermelon Basil Granita With Poblano Granita 8.000

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post; ice sculptures by Ice Lab Ice Sculptures

No Cook Jul 16, 2014

This duo makes a beautiful presentation, with zesty, vibrant green poblano granita standing in visually as the "rind" of the watermelon granita placed atop it.

A jigger of tequila poured on top transforms the granitas into a refreshing, slushy cocktail.

Plastic food storage containers with lids work well for freezing granitas; you can also use nonreactive metal containers such as shallow baking pans. Choose the correct size; you don't want the liquid to be more than 1 inch deep, or the granita will take much longer to freeze.

Make Ahead: Granita is at its best the day you make it, but it can be made up to a week in advance. The two granitas here each need at least 3 hours' freezing time. Fluff/scrape with a fork before serving.


Servings:
8

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 8 servings; makes 4 cups watermelon granita, 2 cups poblano granita

Ingredients
  • For the poblano granita
  • 1 large poblano chili pepper, stemmed, seeded and coarsely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 8 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup packed spinach leaves
  • For the watermelon granita
  • 1 pound seedless watermelon flesh, cut into 1-inch cubes (3 cups)
  • 5 ounces ripe papaya flesh, cut into 1-inch cubes (1 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 large fresh basil leaves
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Black sesame seeds or chocolate wafers broken to resemble watermelon seeds, for garnish (optional)

Directions

For the poblano granita: Combine the poblano, sugar, mint and spinach in a blender on high speed for 1 minute, then use a spatula or the back of a spoon to push the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer, letting the liquid fall into a plastic container or shallow, nonreactive metal pan; discard the solids. Cover and freeze for about 1 hour, until the mixture is slushy around the edges. Stir with a fork, then return to the freezer and repeat the stirring every 30 minutes for the next 2 hours or so to create texture/crystals.

For the watermelon granita: Combine the watermelon, papaya, lime juice, sugar, basil and salt in a blender on high speed for 1 minute. Pour into a shallow container; straining is not necessary. Cover and freeze for about 1 hour, until slushy around the edges. Stir with a fork, then return to the freezer and repeat the stirring every 30 minutes for the next 2 hours or so to create texture/crystals.

To serve, fluff/scrape each granita with the tines of a fork. Scoop 1/4 cup of the poblano granita into the bottom of each cocktail (martini) glass; use the back of a spoon to press the green granita into the bottom and sides of the glass, leaving a well in the center. Pile 1/2 cup of the watermelon granita into the well. Sprinkle with seeds or cookie bits, if using. Serve right away.


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Recipe Source

From food writer and former chef David Hagedorn.

Tested by David Hagedorn.

E-mail questions to the Food Section.

E-mail questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving: 80


% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 0g 0%

Saturated Fat: 0g 0%

Cholesterol: 0mg 0%

Sodium: 35mg 1%

Total Carbohydrates: 20g 7%

Dietary Fiber: 0g 0%

Sugar: 18g

Protein: 0g


*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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