Professionally trained chef and owner of Food Lover's Odyssey Vacations. Sharing my love for the food, wine and culture of Italy and France with travelers since 2009.Read More
I’ve given up my one (sometimes two) gelati a day for a new habit. Sicilian granita is my new vice; it’s a burst of chilled fruit in a cup. Fruit puree, simple syrup (equal parts water and sugar heated until the sugar dissolves) and a machine (or a freezer and a fork) is all it takes. Today a Sicilian told me that it also takes a Sicilian hand and the water of the area to make the perfect granita, and that is why only in Sicily can you find a good granita. I’m hoping this regional loyalty fanaticism is not accurate, as I’ll soon to make some with California water and my Sicilian-American hand (I didn’t ask if that counted as a “Sicilian Hand”).
Besides fruit flavors there are also pistachio and almond, made with a puree of each nut, chocolate (this chocoholic loves this flavor) and coffee. Coffee granita with a dollop of whipped cream is part of the Sicilian breakfast. Some of my favorite flavors are: chocolate (of course), gelsi (mulberry), lampone (raspberry), pesca (peach), anguria (watermelon), pistachio, which is the flavor of pistachio intensified by the sugar and ice, and the classic limone (lemon). I do realize it seems all I’ve been doing in Sicily is sampling granita.
Today I’m in Ortigia, an island south of the main part of Syracuse, and taking my morning coffee granita on the waterfront. While I get a sweetened version of caffeine and think of how to make the pistachio granita at home, you can find a recipe for watermelon granita here.
I will have to have another fruit flavored one later in the afternoon. I’m sure I can count it as a serving of fruit. Hummm, in that case, I might need two more “servings of fruit” today.