Fire and Ice

July 30, 2014 No comments » [ssba]

Pineapple Jalapeno Lime Granita

Chef Sal Giuliano of The Restaurant at Ponte knows how to keep guests cool: turn up the heat.  Guests were delighted with his recent dessert special, a Pineapple Jalapeno Lime Granita.

A granita is a semi-frozen dessert that originated in Sicily and is made from sugar, water and various flavorings.    It’s not exactly traditional ice cream, but it’s cold, sweet, refreshing and tastes darn good on a warm summer’s day.  Popular granita flavorings include citrus juices, fresh fruit, coffee, mint…and wine.  Chef Sal’s granita dessert is not part of the regular summer menu, but he is graciously sharing his recipe with you!  This is wonderful at the end of a meal, or as a treat in the middle of the day when the temperatures are rising.  The lime and pineapple are tart and refreshing and the jalapeno gives a surprisingly delicious kick of heat (but not too much).  Enjoy with 2013 Pinot Grigio or 2013 Moscato.

Pineapple Jalapeno Lime Granita

Granita Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, halved (don’t discard the seeds)
  • 2 pounds of pineapple, peeled and diced
  • Zest and juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tsp of salt

Garnish ingredients

  • ½ lb pineapple, peeled and sliced in quarter sticks
  • 2 jalapenos, sliced (for candied jalapenos)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¾ cup water
  • 2 lemon cucumbers, sliced in ½ inch half moons
  • 1 dozen 6” skewers

Granita Method: Combine water, sugar and jalapenos in a sauce pan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.  When sauce comes to a boil, lower heat and simmer about 5 minutes.  Cool the mixture to room temperature and then strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard peppers and seeds. Add the 2 pounds of pineapple, lime juice,  salt, cooled sugar mixture  and lime zest  to a food processor and process until smooth. Pour mixture into a 9×13 baking pan. Freeze until ice forms around the edges. Stir with a fork and return to the freezer. Repeat every ½ hour or so until granita is completely frozen. This should take about 3 hours or so. Use a fork to scrape the granita into fluffy crystals and serve in a frosted bowl or glass and garnish with grilled pineapple, candied jalapenos and lemon cucumbers on a skewer and a spring of pineapple mint.

Garnish Method: Take pineapple quartered sticks and grill on grill until lightly marked.  Set them aside to cool and slice into ½ inch quarters. In a sauce pan, place sliced jalapenos with 1 cup of sugar and ¾ cup of water and bring to a low boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 7 minutes. Remove jalapeno slices and place them on a baking rack to cool.

–What is your favorite way to stay cool in the summer?

–Erica Martinez

–Recipe from Chef Salvatore Giuliano

Posted by , July 30, 2014 No comments

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