Monday, February 09, 2009

Challenge Book #32 - Lemonade Granita



My goodness, talk about bad times. Here in Canberra we have endured the hottest weekend in our history - two days of over 40C (104F). This following two weeks of 36-37C plus. Amazingly, this is actually quite mild with other towns further west and south hitting 47-48C.

It's been miserable. But this pales into absolute insignificance compared to what is happening in Victoria. 131 people have died in wildfires and there are fears that the toll with reach 230. 230 people - it is almost unbelievable. Entire towns have been wiped out. I can barely bring myself to watch the news it is just all too horrible.

In 2003 Canberra had it's own wildfire disaster when hundreds of homes were burned to the ground. I remember I was at a friend's baby shower. It got darker and darker and darker until, although it was only early afternoon, it was like dusk. After a call from the backyard, we all went outside and looked over the backfence. Suddenly there was the fire. It came over the crest of a heavily wooded hill just a few kilometres away across some vacant grassed paddocks. It raced down that hill at a breathtaking speed. Black charcoal leaves were falling out of the sky. It was the scariest thing.

Luckily that house and my own in the next suburb were safe. Too many people were not so fortunate. I hope these fires in Victoria are over soon. I really do!!!

Anyway, putting this national disaster to one side, what is one to do in the midst of a horrendous heat wave. Take to the ice, that's what!!! I stuffed the freezer with frozen drinks. I sucked and slurped my way through the weekend.

Top of the pops was this lemonade granita. Simple to make. Cool and refreshing. It was perfect for the circumstances. I imagine it would work well with any number of other flavours.




I found this recipe in this book, which is Challenge Book #32 in the KJ wants a Kitchen Aid Challenge. This is not a favourite book of mine. I have tried two other recipes from it previously and they have were terrible. I don't mean just displeasing. I mean shockingly bad, as in inedible. Which is a shame because I loved Silvana in The Best - my most favourite ever cooking show. So I'm glad that I have now managed to get something worthwhile from it.

Lemonade Granita
(adapted from Family)

juice and zest of six lemons
1 stalk lemon grass, bashed
175gm castor sugar
500ml soda water
150ml water

Put zest, juice, water and lemon grass in a saucepan. Heat until sugar is dissolved and simmer for five minutes. Cool.

Strain into a plastic container. Add the soda water. Freeze for at least two hours. Break into flakes with a fork to serve.

7 Comments:

At 4:20 am, Blogger Deborah said...

It is so weird to think that it is snowing here in the US, but so hot over there! And I hope the fires are taken care of soon - so scary!

This granita looks like the perfect thing to beat the heat.

 
At 11:44 pm, Blogger Patricia Scarpin said...

KJ, we have been having really hot days here, but the insane amount of rain has destroyed many places and several people have lost their homes. It's awful.

Glad to know you are OK, sweetie. And this granita would go so well here today - 33ÂșC!

 
At 1:21 am, OpenID onlinepastrychef said...

Love granita--so refreshing! I really like the idea of adding lemongrass for that slightly herbal note. Bet it'd be good w/some mint leaves steeped in it for awhile, too!

 
At 7:28 pm, Anonymous The Cooking Ninja said...

yum yum ... reminds me of ice kachang :) so refreshing!

 
At 4:44 am, Blogger Amanda at Little Foodies said...

Let's hope it cools very soon. It must have been awful watching a fire spread that quickly, especially while at a baby shower. My in-laws live in Spain and in recent years have had to vacate their house a few times because of forest fires.

Shame about the Silvana Franco book, at least you got one good recipe from it.

Stay safe.

 
At 12:41 pm, Blogger LadyRed said...

This looks like it defines refreshing. I will have to keep this on hand for when the US finally gets a summery day. We are stuck just out of reach of Spring!

 
At 7:17 am, Anonymous Alison said...

Sounds delightful, I'm saving the recipe for when summer finally comes to Portland.

 

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