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Strawberry Granita with Beaujolais
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 pounds (8 cups) fresh strawberries, hulled, halved
1 cup Beaujolais or other fruity dry red wine
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries plus 8 large whole berries for garnish
1/4 cup Beaujolais or other fruity dry red wine
3 tablespoons sugar
For granita: Stir 1 cup water and sugar in small saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Cool syrup.
Place halved strawberries, red wine, and cooled sugar syrup in processor and puree until smooth. Strain strawberry puree into 13 x 9 x 2-inch metal pan, pressing on solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard strawberry solids in strainer. Cover puree and freeze 1 hour.
Using fork, stir granita, mashing any solid parts with back of fork. Freeze until firm, scraping mixture with fork every 30 minutes to form icy crystals. DO AHEAD: Granita can be made 3 days ahead. Keep covered and frozen.
Garnishes: Mix sliced berries, wine, and sugar in medium bowl. Let stand at room temperature until sugar dissolves and juices form, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Divide sliced strawberry mixture among 8 wineglasses. Scrape granita with fork to loosen ice crystals. Divide granita among glasses. Garnish edge of each glass with 1 whole strawberry and serve.
When shopping for strawberries, use your nose. Choose berries with a sweet, fragrant scent. A deep red color doesn?t always equate to flavorful, juicy berries, but do avoid any with wilted leaves or white or green areas around the stem.
by Cindy Mushet
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Hugo Chinchilla Hurst