nectarines. That ran out the same day I picked a cucumber without any plans how to use it, other than the lime I had bought the week before with some vague ideas. A quick investigation proved that adding lime to the granita was a good idea.
There are a surprising number of cucumber granita recipes online. Surprising meaning more than two. I settled on this one from MyRecipes and didn't tweak it that much. Mainly, I cut back on the sugar. My home-grown cucumbers are sweeter than what you get in the market, but I really did not want this to become about the sugar. It's there to help in crystal formation.
I also decided that a wee bit of alcohol could bring out nuances in an admittedly light-flavored recipe. Cucumbers aren't really known as flavor powerhouses. This contains nowhere near enough alcohol to count as a cocktail, and most of it boils off. I used Tanqueray because I still have Papa Smurf's huge bottle of it. I've always loved the smell, but I don't really drink hard stuff. Tequila would be another good choice for this savory recipe, and more likely to be in the average liquor cabinet. Of course, going alcohol-free is always an acceptable option.
*1 English cucumber (about 1 lb)
1/2 C sugar
1 C water
1/4 tsp salt
*1 Tb gin or tequila, optional
*3 sprigs mint
1. Grate zest from limes and place in a small saucepan with sugar, water, and salt. Squeeze juice from limes and add to pot. Add alcohol, if using, and stir everything together. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for one minute, then remove from heat. Add mint and allow to steep while you prepare the cucumber, about 10 minutes.
2. Peel cucumber. Cut in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Chop coarsely and place in blender. Remove mint and pour syrup into blender. Run until very smooth, about 1 minute.
Serves 6 to 8
Difficulty rating :)