In a bid to get children to eat healthier, ‘The Cook At Home Dad’ shares tips and recipes he creates for and with his kids.
Granita is a quick, refreshing, and inexpensive dessert I make with my girls all the time. We often make lemonade granita (with fresh lemons), and watermelon granita (using pureed watermelon and juice). We only use a little bit of sugar to sweeten this frozen treat, so it is much healthier than ice pops or Italian ices you get at the grocery store.
One day, my girls and I were making granita and I was reading Facebook. I saw post after post from friends of mine talking about wine, coffee, and ice cream. It was as though a huge light bulb turned on over my head when I came up with this rich indulgence for my wife: chocolate cabernet espresso granita with lemon zest whipped cream! I had to experiment with the recipe several times, and found I could not cut down on the sugar for this recipe. This granita is perfect with or without the whipped cream garnish – especially sitting poolside on a hot summer afternoon. Enjoy!
- 2 C water
- 1 C sugar
- 1 C heavy whipping cream
- 1 Cup of “good” Cabernet (make sure it is one you would drink, not cooking wine)
- 1/4 C fresh brewed espresso
- 1 T cocoa powder
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 t lemon zest (plus more for garnish)
- Chocolate shavings (for garnish—you can use a vegetable peeler and any chocolate bar/candy)
- In a small sauce pan, combine water and 2/3 C sugar to make a syrup (it is not a simple syrup, which is typically equal parts sugar and water…that would be too sweet for this recipe).
- Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently until sugar dissolves.
- Set aside to cool to room temperature.
- Brew 2 double espresso shots and set aside to cool to room temperature.
- In a small bowl, combine cocoa powder and 2 T of syrup.
- Whisk well (and it will take effort) to thoroughly combine. You do not want any granules of cocoa powder, so be sure to whisk until completely smooth.
- In a glass baking dish, combine cocoa mixture, 1 C syrup, wine, and 1/4 C espresso.
- Whisk until well combined. It will become a dull red/brick color, but will deepen during the freezing process.
- Place covered in freezer for two hours.
- Remove cover and scrape with a fork using back and forth and diagonal motions.
- Re-cover the mix and place back in the freezer for at least one hour.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine whipping cream, 1/3 C sugar, vanilla extract and 1 t of lemon zest.
- Beat on low, and gradually increase speed until you have solid peaks (about 3-4 minutes).
- Remove granita from freezer and repeat scraping process.
- Scoop into a cappuccino mug or into a wine glass.
- Top with a dollop of whipped cream.
- Garnish with chocolate shavings and lemon zest.
PLEASE NOTE: This is not like cooking with alcohol where the alcohol burns off, and it is not suitable for children. Enjoy responsibly!
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