Perfect granita - lead image

It’s basically a fancy, bashed-up ice lolly, but nothing beats a cool granita on a hot day. At its simplest, the recipe is a frozen fruit juice. But once you’ve mastered the basics, it’s easy to get clever with your favourite flavour combos!

BASIC GRANITA

  • Start with your base syrup (below).
  • Then choose 800g of your favourite fruit (or 800ml of fruit juice). Strawberries, raspberries, mango, pineapple, passion fruit, grapefruit, blood orange, apple, grape or still lemonade all work brilliantly.
  • Follow the remaining steps below for a perfect granita.

THE BASE SYRUP

To make the syrup, mix 100g sugar with 300ml water in a small saucepan. Stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, then allow to cool.

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THE PERFECT GRANITA

Perfect granita - base syrup

  1. Blitz the fruit into a smooth purée with a hand blender or food processor.
  2. Combine the purée, or fruit juice, with the base syrup and pour into a shallow container. Freeze for 2 to 3 hours.
  3. When the granita has set, scratch the ice with a fork until you’ve raked through all of it. Granita can be coarse or fine, so keep raking until you reach your desired texture.
  4. Freeze the granita for another hour, then briefly run a fork through it again before serving.

Perfect granita - fork through syrup

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EXTRA KICK…

For extra oomph, add any of the following to your base syrup while it’s heating, then strain once cooled:
lemongrass (1 stalk, bashed)
ginger (thumb-sized piece, grated)
cardamom (6 pods, husks removed and seeds smashed)
vanilla (1 pod, split and seeds scraped)

Perfect granita - final recipe

…AND A TWIST

  • Stir in the juice and zest of 1 orange, lemon, lime or grapefruit to the pan with the syrup straight after you take it off the heat.
  • Or add two Earl Grey teabags to your water before making the base syrup for a lovely fragrant flavour

TOP TIPS

  • For a quick, fork-free granita, freeze different flavours in ice-cube trays, then just whizz them up in a blender when you fancy a cool treat.
  • Save space in your freezer and freeze your granita in a flattened, resealable food bag.

This feature originally appeared in Jamie magazine.