Watermelon Granitas

To me, watermelon triggers many different memories. It reminds me of humid summer evenings sitting on the back porch, watermelon football in the pool, seed spitting contests with my cousins, watermelontinis shortly after my 21st birthday. It's funny how a fruit—its smell, its taste, the soreness of your arms after carrying it fifteen city blocks—can evoke such strong memories.

Writing about food means finding new ways to utilize old favorites, which can sometimes feel like reinventing the wheel. A watermelon, though, simply as it is, is the perfect summertime treat. Eating a slice so juicy that you have to bend over to shield your clothes from the mess is an honored tradition. So who are we to try and improve one of nature's most delicious fruits? Well, we're meddlers. Sometimes we strike out and concede that nature has one up on us. Every once in a while, though, we are dead on.

An example of such a triumph would be the watermelon and mint granita I made this weekend. A granita is somewhere between a sorbet and a shaved ice. All that I needed was the watermelon, lemon juice, some fresh mint, and the freezer. Unlike ice creams or sorbet this requires no fancy equipment, nothing but patience and a little time. And the end result is a scrumptious, refreshing treat. Combining the sweetness of a watermelon and the refreshing qualities of both ingredients, the granita leaves you feeling well... like it might be worth it carrying another watermelon home fifteen city blocks.

Watermelon Granita

4 cups fresh watermelon, chopped
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
Juice of 1 lemon

In your food processor, combine watermelon, lemon juice, and mint. Puree until smooth. Pour into a 9-inch circular baking pan. Put, uncovered, in the freezer. Every hour, use a fork to rake the mixture, breaking up frozen chunks. Repeat for 3-4 hours until it is frozen, but still breakable with a fork or spoon. Serve.

What's your favorite way to enjoy watermelon? Chime in below!


Elena Rosemond-Hoerr is a writer and photographer and can be found on her own website, biscuitsandsuch.com.

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