I have mentioned the zucchini I’m getting from my garden, but this week the main produce item is cucumbers. I’m not much of a gardener and have only done it the past couple of years. Last year I planted about six cucumber plants. They were large burpless cucumbers and we had them coming out our ears. So this year I only planted three cucumber plants, and they were the small pickling cucumber variety. I thought that would be just right for us. Well, the plants took off, and I still have cucumbers coming out my ears! Next year I think we will have one cucumber plant. I really need to go for more variety in my garden, but since I’m a beginner, I like having just a few things that I know will do well.
This granita was born out of the need to find some way to use these cucumbers. Of course, I know what your thinking—make pickles! We are really not that fond of pickles. I chose pickling cucumbers because they are small and have nice edible skin. I have thought about making pickles to give as gifts, but then I have to get into canning. For now, I’m giving away cucumbers, eating cucumbers, and making this granita. I originally called it a sorbet because I made it in my new ice cream maker. But in the end, it was more like a granita. I forgot to take pictures when I first made it, and once you freeze what’s left, it definitely becomes a granita. It freezes together pretty solidly and has to be broken up or shaved.
I’ll admit that the kids weren’t too fond of it. They didn’t say it was bad, it was just weird. You have to prepare yourself for that fact that it is not a fruity or creamy dessert. It will taste like cucumbers. However, if you like cucumbers and mint, I think you will enjoy this. If you don’t like mint, you could try substituting another herb such as fresh dill.
- 4 cups peeled, seeded, chopped cucumber
- 1 1/2 teaspoon chopped mint leaves
- 1/3 cup sugar (or to taste)
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Put all ingredients in a food processor and blend until the cucumbers are pureed. Turn on your ice cream maker and add the mixture. Mine only took about 10 – 15 minutes.
- If you don’t have an ice cream maker, pour it into a large flat container (a 9 x 13 inch pan works well) and freeze. About every 30 minutes stir and/or scrape the mixture to break it up. You can use a fork to “shave” it.
More Cucumber Ideas
This post is linked to some great food carnivals: