Monday, July 11, 2011

Watermelon goodness... at least the puppy thinks so.

Well, summer arrived in Seattle on July 5. Maybe a day or two earlier this year, but I was in Vegas so I didn't know. The HOT weather in LV plus the awesome PNW weather this week had me thinking about the best ways to cool off.  

This recipe is inspired by a recent trip to San Diego. There I visited Searsucker - a restaurant openned by Top Chef alumni Brian Malarkey. I love me the Top Chef and could resist a chance to see Brian in action.

There, I sampled one of the most delicious cocktails that I have had in a while - a combination of watermelon, gin and a serrano chile. In an attempt to improve upon something great, I decided to turn this into a dessert drink.

Watermelon and Serrano Chile Granita

* Ingredients * 
2/3 of a seedless, mid-sized watermelon (about 4 cups watermelon juice)
1 serrano chiles 
2/3 cup sugar 
Splash of Gin
Mint Sprigs

* Instructions *
1. Chop watermelon into large chunks. Puree in blender or food processor. Strain until you have 4 cups of juice.
2. Seed the serrano chile. Mash in a chile using a mortar and pestal. Strain juice. 
3. Combine watermelon juice, chile juice and sugar. Stir until well dissolved. 
4. Pour juice mixture into a shallow pan. Place in freezer. 
5. After 45 minutes, use a rubber spatula to break up the partially frozen mixture. Continue to freeze for another 1-2 hours, breaking up occasionally. 
6. Serve with a splash of gin and a sprig of mint.
7. Do not leave your 4 month old puppy outside alone with the drink. Zeuggie lurked until around until I went inside to get a spoon. He then helped himself to a little... err, a lot of granita.