This sweet-tart frozen dessert takes a few hours to freeze but only 15 minutes of hands-on time. Top scoops of the granita with a spoonful or two of sparkling wine, if desired. I like to add Amarena cherries in syrup or Luxardo Maraschino cherries for a triple cherry delight.
For simple syrup, simmer 1 cup sugar with 1 cup water in a small saucepan until sugar is completely dissolved. Cool and refrigerate for several weeks.
You can use frozen sour cherries if you cannot find them fresh.
- 1 Pound stemmed sour cherries, pitted (2 cups)
- 1 Pound stemmed sweet cherries, pitted (2 cups)
- 1/2 Cup water
- 1/2-2/3 Cup simple syrup (see note)
- 1/8 Teaspoon salt
- Luxardo maraschino cherries, optional, for garnish
Step 1: Puree 1 pound pitted sour cherries and 1 pound pitted sweet cherries with ½ cup water in a blender (work in batches if necessary) until smooth. Push through a fine-mesh strainer into a 13- by 9-inch metal baking pan. Stir in simple syrup to taste and salt.
Step 2: Freeze until very slushy, 1-2 hours. Rake the mixture with a large fork to fluff it up. Then repeat the process of freezing and raking every 2 hours until completely fluffed and frozen.
Step 3: Return to the freezer and repeat the process of freezing and raking with the fork 2 more times.
Step 4: Use an ice cream scoop to serve the mixture in small glasses. Garnish with maraschino cherries, if desired.