Find yourself with some leftover wine or beer after a party this summer? Turn it into dessert. I found an interesting hot-weather dessert idea—a granita—suggesting a way to use up leftover libations, with a recipe from Alice Medrich. Medrich knows about desserts. She credits a single chocolate truffle that she had in Paris as the inspiration for her career in food.
After spending time in Paris, Medrich returned to this country and opened Cocolat, a bakery and dessert shop. Medrich is acknowledged as the person who introduced chocolate truffles to American eaters. You can read more about Medrich, the classes she teaches, and her cookbooks at her website.
So what’s a granita? Granitas are like a grown-up version of a snow cone. You make it by putting a liquid in the freezer and periodically scraping it up with a fork to keep it from freezing solid.
In Medrich’s version, the idea is to use leftover wine with water and sugar to make a granita. If you have a little white wine, as well as red, go ahead and mix them both. Medrich also notes that you can use flat beer to make this icy-cold dessert, adding that you want to steer clear of beer that is heavy on the hops. Take a look at Medrich’s recipe and make a granita for dinner on a sultry summer night.
We discussed a kid-friendly granita using lemonade a few posts ago. In our house we used the scraping of the granita in thirty minute gaps of time as a way of helping the kids learn to tell time. There’s math in the kitchen, kids!
If you’re still in the mood for something sweet, check out Alice Medrich’s recipe for chocolate truffles. Chocolate truffles also made an appearance on this week’s episode of MasterChef. Granitas and truffles are both simple desserts with big flavor. Try making them today!
Alice Knisley Matthias is a mom of two boys who love to trade weird-but-true facts. She writes about food, family, education and garden. She loves to cook, grow fresh herbs, and believes in an organic lifestyle for her family in the kitchen and the garden. Her work has appeared in Eating Well, Highlights for Children, Boys’ Life, Chicken Soup for the Soul, What to Expect, Cook n’ Scribble and an America’s Test Kitchen Cook’s Country Cookbook. She is the author of herbinkitchen.com and a regular blogger for KIDS DISCOVER.