HAPPY BIRTHDAY ERIKA!!! & watermelon granita

happy birthay!

photo by Will Clayton (from Flickr)

Today is Erika’s birthday – HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FRIEND!!! We took the week off from cooking so she could spend some time with her family. E, you get a day and a half more and that’s it!

Below is a dessert we tried a couple of weeks ago.

Watermelon Granita

It irritates me so much that every awesome-sounding recipe for ice cream, sherbet, sorbet involves an ice cream maker. Ack! I have no room in my apartment-sized kitchen (complete with no storage – as per “big city” rules) for another kitchen tool that I’ll use once a year (if that).

Last month, Self magazine published about five different recipes for cold treats and NONE of them needed an ice cream maker. Yea!!! You win, Self!

SONY DSC

not frozen yet!!! don’t drink it.

The first recipe we tried was watermelon granita with blueberries. I adjusted the recipe a bit. I had extra whipping cream. Naturally I just had to use it.

Ingredients
6 cups (or 2 lbs) seedless watermelon, cubed
1/2 c fresh lime juice
1/3 cup agave nectar
2 cups fresh blueberries
whipping cream (optional)
powdered sugar (which I’m still out of … if you read the lemon cake post)
vanilla extract

Directions
In a food processor, puree watermelon. (I used a juicer. One of the newest large kitchen tools we stuffed into our kitchen.) Strain puree through a sieve, reserving liquid, discard solids. In a 9″ x 13″ pan, combine watermelon puree, juice and agave. Freeze, scraping thoroughly with a fork every 20 to 30 minutes, until granita resembles coarse crystals, 2 to 4 hours.

SONY DSCWhile granita is freezing, whip the heavy cream. I usually put a small metal bowl in the freezer to get it really cold to make the whipped cream. I would say that you should add a bit of powdered sugar to the cream after you whip it, but I don’t have any so I used some agave syrup. It took some of the air out of the whipped cream, but it sweetened it just fine. I also added some vanilla extract. Cause I like it.

Remove from freezer, scrape granita once more with a fork. Divide among 6 glasses. Top each with 1/3 cup blueberries and some whipped cream, if desired.

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