Cucumber Granita

"This is a simple little frozen miracle. It can transform a bowl of gazpacho into an epicure's delight. Placed in a margarita glass with some mint and/or basil leaves, it is a perfect little palate cleanser. Or it can be the perfect little addition to a bloody mary or similar cocktail. Use an ice cream scoop or a cookie scoop to scrape it up into perfect little balls. Cooking time is freezing time and is a guesstimate."
photo by a user photo by a user
Ready In:
1hr 45mins
2 1/2 cups




  • Peel the cucumbers, cut them in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Cut the cucumbers into chunks.
  • Puree the cucumbers in a blender (or use an immersion blender) with the lemon juice, onion, green pepper, salt, mint, oil and water. This makes about 2 1/2 cups puree.
  • Pour the cucumber puree into two 9-inch metal cake pans. Freeze.
  • To serve, remove the granita from freezer 5 minutes before serving. Use a fork to scrape the ice into mounds. Add the scraped ice to the gazpacho immediately before serving. Or use an ice cream scoop or cookie scoop to make small balls of granita to garnish cocktails, cold soup or just as a palate cleanser.

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<p>I have always loved to cook. When I was little, I cooked with my Grandmother who had endless patience and extraordinary skill as a baker. And I cooked with my Mother, who had a set repertoire, but taught me many basics. Then I spent a summer with a French cousin who opened up a whole new world of cooking. And I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was surrounded by all varieties of wonderful food, from great bagels and white fish to all the wonders of Chinatown and Little Italy, from German to Spanish to Mexican to Puerto Rican to Cuban, not to mention Cuban-Chinese. And my parents loved good food, so I grew up eating things like roasted peppers, anchovies, cheeses, charcuterie, as well as burgers and the like. In my own cooking I try to use organics as much as possible; I never use canned soup or cake mix and, other than a cheese steak if I'm in Philly or pizza by the slice in New York, I don't eat fast food. So, while I think I eat and cook just about everything, I do have friends who think I'm picky--just because the only thing I've ever had from McDonald's is a diet Coke (and maybe a frie or two). I have collected literally hundreds of recipes, clipped from the Times or magazines, copied down from friends, cajoled out of restaurant chefs. Little by little, I am pulling out the ones I've made and loved and posting them here. Maybe someday, every drawer in my apartment won't crammed with recipes. (Of course, I'll always have those shelves crammed with cookbooks.) I'm still amazed and delighted by the friendliness and the incredible knowledge of the people here. 'Zaar has been a wonderful discovery for me.</p>
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