After checking out this week's contest every day, I noticed that no one posted a recipe for granita and decided to make one myself.
Usually I like to use fresh fruit or berries in granitas, but since I didn’t have any, I used a can of pineapple chunks and added orange tea, candied orange peel, honey, cinnamon, and vanilla to enhance the flavor. The addition of yogurt makes this granita smooth and creamy.
This granita makes a wonderful smoothie or a float. —Kukla
8 to 10
• 1 28oz can Sweet Pineapple Chunks in 100% pineapple juice (drained)
• 1/2 cup Clover Honey
• 2 bags Orange Pekoe Tea steeped in 3/4 cup hot boiled water
• 2 medium size cinnamon sticks
• 1 teaspoon high quality vanilla extract or half vanilla bean
• 1 cup Greek Style whole milk plain yogurt (strained)
Pour accumulated pineapple juice (about 1 3/4cups), the steeped orange tea, honey and cinnamon sticks to a medium sauce pan.
Stir while bringing to a boil, then reduce heat to low and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes.
Turn off heat, cover with a lid and allow the flavors to concentrate for another 15-20 minutes.
Uncover, discard cinnamon sticks and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, in a blender, puree pineapple chunks, add lemon juice, vanilla and yogurt, and blend until combined and smooth.
Add the cooled syrup, blend one more time, and pour the mixture into a roasting pan or glass baking dish. The dish should be large enough so the liquid is not more than 1-inch deep.
Freeze the mixture for 2 hours. Remove from the freezer and scrape with 2 forks to break up ice and add the diced candied orange peel. Return to the freezer and freeze until solid, about 4 hours, scraping with forks every hour or so.
When the granita is frozen, scoop it into chilled glass bowls and serve immediately.
For the smoothie; blend 2 scoops of granita with 1 cup of cold milk. For the float; top 2 scoops of granita with any soda of your choice (I like Gingerale or orange).