Espresso Granita/Granita di Caffe Espresso
One of our family's favorite recipes, Espresso Granita, invokes the essence of summers spent sitting by the Italian coast. Anne Marie discovered this recipe for Italian ice, while searching for a cold dessert to serve to her future in-laws.
Traditionally made with fruit, this recipe takes a modern spin by mixing strong dark espresso with sugar. Paired with cantuccini and whipped cream, it conjures up the feeling of sitting at a beachside Italian restaurant.
This recipe is adapted from "From Biba's Italian Kitchen" by Biba Caggiano
In a bowl, combine hot espresso with granulated sugar and mix well to dissolve. Cool coffee to room temperature and pour it into an ice cube tray or flat metal container to freeze it.
When coffee is completely frozen, remove it from the freezer and remove the cubes from the mold. Put the cubes in a food processor fitted with a metal blade and coarsely grind them.
Spoon coarsely-ground cubes (granita) into chilled glasses, top with whipped cream, and serve immediately.
Anne Marie's note: I have made this without using a food processor by putting the cooled espresso mixture into a bowl and placing it in the freezer. Once the mixture starts to become frozen, but before it's completely solid, use a whisk or fork to beat and scrape until you create a granular texture. If the mixture becomes too slushy, put it back into the freezer and repeat until you have the desired texture. Remember to serve it with our delicious cantuccini!
Image from Lavazza