Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Lemon Mint Granita with Mascarpone Whipped Cream

A frozen lemon concoction is a delicious treat when temperatures start to rise. Beat the heat with icy, flavored crystals topped with a bit of whipped cream and leaves of mint.

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
3 mint sprigs, plus more for garnish

For the topping:
3/4 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese
2 teaspoons honey

To start, make a simple syrup. In small saucepan, boil 1/2 cup sugar with 3 cups water until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and steep mint sprigs for 10 minutes. Place a metal bowl or pan and a metal spoon in the freezer. Let the syrup cool then mix it with the lemon juice and lemon zest. Pour the liquid into the cold container and freeze. Stir it every 30 minutes or so. It will take about 3 hours to freeze. To make the topping, stir together the mascarpone cheese and the honey until smooth in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add cream and powdered sugar. Whip until the cream has soft peaks, about 2 minutes. Top granita with whipped cream and mint leaves.

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