Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Dreaming of Summer

In my impatience for summer to arrive I decided to make a granita with tropical fruits for this weeks Cookbook Challenge.  I know it was madness & I should stick to gooey warming puddings for a couple of weeks yet but I just couldn't resist.  The theme was raw so I guess no matter what I chose it was not going to be a hearty or Wintery dish at all.  I actually had a hard time choosing something to make, I initially wanted to make a salad of some description but nothing took my fancy so fruit salad it was.  Technically the granita has a sugar syrup which is cooked so it's not all raw, though as it ends up frozen with fresh fruit I figured it was pretty close.  The recipe is for passionfruit granita with a suggestion to change to mango if you prefer, yes please, I looooveee mangoes & they so remind me of summer which I am absolutely dying for so mango it was.  The granita is fantastic, sweet & very fresh tasting & perfect with a selection of fruits.  I scooped it over paw paw, kiwifruit & pineapple.  I dont normally eat paw paw & this one left a really unpleasant taste in all our mouths so I dont know if I bought a dud or it's an acquired taste, wont be going there again & will stick to the others which were perfect.  Have some leftover which I think I might have with some sweet red strawberries, esp as the forecast over the next week even shows the temp reaching figures beginning with a 2, yippee!  Oh, did I mention I am also off to Cairns in a couple of weeks for an early taste of summer, VERY EXCITED!!!!  Any recommendations for places to eat (child friendly) or places to go?

Notes - Granita can be stored in the freezer tightly covered for up to a week once made & feel free to mix up the fruit with any combo you like and what is in season/available of course

Exotic fruit salad with passionfruit (or mango) granita - Relaxed cooking with Curtis Stone

Serves 4

1/4 cup sugar
500g ripe passionfruit, halved (or sub with 2 ripe mangoes, pureed)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 pineapple, peeled, cored & cut into bite-sized pieces
1 pawpaw, peeled, seeded & cut into bite sized pieces
1 mango, peeled, pitted and cut into bite sized pieces
1 star fruit, cut into 6mm thick slices
4 kiwis, cut into bite sized pieces
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves (optional)

In a small, heavy saucepan, stir 1 cup of water and the sugar together until the sugar dissolves.  Slowly bring the syrup to the boil, then remove it from the heat and let it cool completely.

Spoon the passionfruit pulp or mango puree into the cooled syrup and mix together.  Stir in the lemon juice.  Pour the mixture into a 20cm square baking dish and freeze it for about 30 minutes, or until the mixture is icy around the edges. 

Using a large fork, stir the icy part of the mixture into the remaining mixture in the dish.  Continue to freeze the mixture, stirring in edges every 20 to 30 minutes, for about 1 1/2 hours or longer, or until it is frozen.  Using a lrge fork, scrape the frozen granita into flaky crystals.  Cover & keep frozen.

In a large bowl, gently toss the fruits and mint together.  Spoon into serving bowls, top with granita and serve.

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