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Christmas: Sicilian Lemon Granita

Posted by Suzanne on 29 Dec 2014

The Sicilian House team enjoyed making lemon granita, the quintessential Sicilian ice to ease the heat during an Australian Christmas this year.

Granita, often infused with lemon, jasmine, cinnamon and other exotic flavours, has long been a staple during the heat of a Sicilian summer.

Famed Sicilian writer and cook, Mary Taylor Simeti tells that granita, an Arabic inspired ice, has its roots in Mount Etna when the Arabs used the ice of Etna to chill and dilute their sweet fruit syrups, sarbat, over 1000 years ago.

And, on a warm Christmas Eve in Australia, around 16,000 kilometres from Polizzi Generosa, we made refreshing Lemon Granita, Granita di Limone; a lovely Sicilian buon ricordo.



200 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice

110 g white sugar

1 litre Water


1.  Make a syrup using the water and sugar add a little more sugar, about 50g if you want it a little sweeter. Dissolve the sugar and then bring to the boil.

2. Let the syrup simmer for 2 minutes, remove from the heat and add the lemon juice. Let it cool totally.

3.  Stir really well and pour into a shallow plastic dish, place in the freezer. Use a lidded container that seals well.

4. After a couple of hours take the granita out of the freezer and with a fork scrape the parts frozen and blend with the unfrozen parts.

5. Do this every couple of hours until the granita is pretty firm yet like powdery snow.

6. Serve in tall glasses.

This lemon granita was perfect for a hot Australian Christmas and the best reminder of the granita served during the heat of a Sicilian summer.





Photos: All photos are by Leo Turrisi

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