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Coffee Granita

Coffee Granita
Made with seasonal fruit juice or, as here, with strong coffee, flavored ices are popular all over Italy. In warm weather, a light chilled dessert such as this one makes a particularly appealing finale to a pasta meal.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups hot, strong brewed coffee
  • 3/4 cup sugar, plus sugar, to taste
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • Brandy, to taste
  • Sweetened cocoa, to taste

Directions:

In a pitcher or bowl, combine the coffee and the 3/4 cup sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves. Pour the mixture into a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish or other shallow container. Place in the freezer. When the mixture starts to get icy around the edges, after about 1 hour, use a spoon to stir and break up the ice crystals. Return to the freezer. From that point, stir well every 15 minutes until the mixture forms fine, firm, icy flakes, 2 to 2 1/2 hours more.

In a bowl, using an electric mixer or a whisk, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Beat in sugar and brandy to taste.

To serve, scoop the coffee ice into glasses or serving dishes. Top with the whipped cream, dividing it evenly. Lightly dust each serving with cocoa.
Serves 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Lifestyles Series, Classic Pasta at Home, by Janet Fletcher (Time-Life Books, 1998).