Recipe for lemon-mint granita

Karoline Boehm Goodnick for The Boston Globe

Serves 6

A granita is a simple, semi-frozen dessert made from water and sugar, to which you can add a variety of flavorings. They’re very easy to make and become more sophisticated versions of Italian ice. By scraping the mixture every hour, you break up the ice crystals, making a semi-frozen, lightly textured icy dessert. This granita is only lightly sweetened, so the taste is a little tart.

cups lightly packed fresh mint leaves
cup sugar
cups water
Juice of 8 large lemons (enough to make 1½ cups juice), strained

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1. Have on hand a 9-inch-square metal baking pan, or another metal pan of similar size.

2. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the mint, sugar, and water. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes.

3. Set a fine mesh strainer over a bowl. Strain the syrup, pressing down on the mint leaves to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the leaves and let the syrup cool slightly. Add the lemon juice.

4. Place the mixture in the baking pan. Freeze on a flat surface for 1 hour or until ice crystals form on top. Using a fork, scrape the mixture to break up the crystals. Continue scraping, once an hour, for 4 to 5 hours, or until the mixture is slightly slushy. Molly Shuster