notes from maggie's farm
It's probably getting tiresome, the talk about heatwaves and droughts, huh? I mean, if we're experiencing them, we don't need to be reminded, and if we aren't, we don't want to hear the whining.
So, okay. I won't. I won't say a word about it.
But if, for instance, someone I knew found themself in similar circumstances, I'd recommend cooling off with some of this stuff.
I like this Cherry Lime Moscato granita for it's grown-up flavors. Not too sweet, crisp, the occasional tartness. It makes a great afternoon pick-yourself-up-from-the-melted-pile-of-heat-exhausted-you, if, of course, you find yourself in that state. But not sure why I even mentioned it.
It's also a perfect palate cleanser, between courses (because nothing says summer supper on the porch better than a 6 course dinner), or maybe just a light dessert. That's how we enjoy it. The man with the sweet tooth around here drizzles honey on his. I eat mine straight. Well, kinda straight. Because there's that Moscato wine in it, so, in fact, it would not be straight, would it?
Well, we're just getting picky now. Go make yourself some of this--it'll be ready by supper. On the porch.
IN THIS UNBEARABLE HEAT! (I just couldn't help myself.)
Gettin' juiced up
There are a few ways you could go about this. You could use your juicer to juice pitted cherries. No juicer? You could puree pitted cherries in a blender and have an almost-all-juice granita with a few solid pieces of cherry. That wouldn't be bad. Or you could take that puree, and transfer to a pan, and cook down under low heat to extract more juice. All fine options.
Or you could go buy a bottle of cherry juice concentrate. That's what I did. I was short on time, money, and patience. I just skipped to the chase.
To the quart of cherry juice concentrate, I added one pint Moscato wine. Any sweetened wine will work here, and should you have another favorite, by all means, use it. And play around with the proportions, to taste. You may want more wine. You know who you are, you wino, you.
I added the juice and zest of 4 key limes. Key limes are much smaller than regular limes. If you just can't find the key lime, add the juice and zest of 1/2 regular limes, and a little bit of simple syrup or honey to sweeten the deal.
I poured the mix in a small metal pan. Conducts the chill well, and weathers the in and out and scraping to and fro that this requires.
And then, the most difficult part of the entire process. Clearing a spot in your freezer for a metal pan of this elixir.
When you do manage to clear that level spot, slide it, carefully, into the freezer. Don't mess with it for 2 hours.
Then, take the pan out, and scrape it with a fork to break it into crystals. It won't be frozen solid yet. You'll just scrape the entire pan like this, once an hour, until it's a frozen batch of crystaline fabulousness. You won't want to just leave it there the whole time and try to scrape it at the end of it's freeze-time, because it will be a block of ice, that won't take kindly to your fork pawing away at it. It's quite a bit more agreeable if you check in on it every hour. With a fork. Then back into the frozen fray.
It took about 5 hours for ours to be ready to serve.
All that's left after that is a healthy scoop-up, and maybe a garnish, if you wanna get fancy. Maybe a slice of lime, a few cherries, a mint leaf or three, maybe even a jaunty little cap of whipped cream. Whatever delights your senses. You just want, at all cost, to keep your mind off of..............
HOW UNBEARABLY.....well, you know.