The world’s most delicious dessert – The Sicilian Granita

There really is nothing quite like this Sicilian tradition.

 is a typical Sicilian dessert consisting of a semi-frozen liquid based on water, sugar and fruit or fruit juice. Traditional recipes include lemon, almond and black mulberry but other flavours have emerged such as pistachio, strawberry, coffee and more.

The traditional dessert derives from the early Middle Ages during the Arab rule of Sicily. The Arabs invented this iced dessert by retrieving ice found on the slopes of Mount Etna, Nebrodi and Iblei. The snow hunters known as ‘Nivaroli’  would collect and store the ice in deep holes under the soil, only to be used later on in the warmer months. The Arabs would then scratch the ice and add a mixture of lemon juice and other fruits giving it a sweet and refreshing taste.

mulberry granita
Today, the preparation and conservation of the Sicilian dessert has evolved due to the use of technology, allowing for the perfect Granita to be made with accurate consistency.

The lemon Granita is considered the favorite amongst visitors of the island and is usually enjoyed with a Brioche, a soft round pastry with a smaller round section on top, typically dunked and eaten with the dessert.

lemon granita

If you’re planning a trip to the Mediterranean island, trying ‘a Granita ca’ brioche’ (as they say in Sicilian) will be an experience like no other.

Lemon Granita Recipe

To make lemon Granita, it’s very simple:

  1. Melt 200ml of sugar in 500ml of boiling water.
  2. Cool the mixture and add 500ml of lemon juice to the mix, making sure the juice is free of any seeds and impurities..
  3. Blend the juice mix.
  4. Store the mix in the freezer. Make sure to check the mixture and stir every 30 minutes to prevent the surface from going hard.
  5. After 3 hours of freeze time, your Granita is ready.

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