Review: Strawberry Granita

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By Scott L.

Creating a holy trinity of freshly jeweled strawberries, pleasantly sweet simple syrup, and sharp, acidic lemon juice, Strawberry Granita is the class A drug of modern Italian cuisine.

Gloriously sitting in a martini glass with a blushing rose red hue, and crowned with a modest sprig of heirloom spearmint, Granita tastes of the vast blue skies, the gentle breeze in your hair, and the lightest caress of sunshine; in short, this frozen Italian delicacy is the platonic ideal of a sweet, refreshing summer dessert.

Although the history of Granita may never be recorded in history textbooks, the invention of Granita is credited to the Italians. During the Roman Times, the Italians would pour fruit juice onto fresh snow, creating a prototypical version of the modern Granita. The Granitas that we are so familiar with today originated from Sicily. The word Granita comes from the same Latin root used in granite and granular – indeed the ice crystals look like finely crushed granite stone. A distant cousin to sorbet and Italian ice, Granita has a coarser, more crystalline texture.

This Italian confection entered my canon under the auspices of Chef John. After watching him create this dessert of his YouTube channel “Food Wishes,” I was hit with an instant Italian inspiration, and I knew I had to make this. Super simple, and super speedy, the only labor this dessert requires is the rough forking after it is frozen.

Cold and refreshing, this dessert is simply different from any other shaved ice dessert you’ve tasted. Let other frozen desserts turn to single-toned tastefulness, artificial colors and flavorings, preservatives and chemicals; Strawberry Granita remains reassuringly authentic and natural.

My only quibble with this dessert is its chill – this icy treat is not for those with sensitive teeth. Notwithstanding, Strawberry Granita tastes simply divine.  With flavors so delicate and so pleasurable, this dessert is fit for angels to eat on their clouds.

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