Servings: Serves 4–6
- 2 pounds ripe sweet tomatoes , peeled
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 clove garlic , finely chopped
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 red bell pepper , finely diced
- 1 green bell pepper , finely diced
- 1 cucumber , peeled, seeded and finely diced
- 1/2 red onion , finely diced
Quarter tomatoes and puree in a food processor with sugar and garlic. Strain puree through a sieve to discard seeds. Stir in basil, lemon juice, pepper and salt. Let mixture chill in refrigerator for at least 20 minutes to allow flavors to develop. Freeze granita using one of the methods described below.
Whisk together the olive oil, white wine vinegar, salt and pepper until blended.
In a large bowl, combine the red and green bell pepper, cucumber and red onion. Add the dressing and toss to coat.
Spoon granita into the center of serving dishes and arrange the salad around each. Serve immediately.
Classic Granita Method:
Pour the granita mixture into a wide and shallow container, such as a stainless steel baking dish (the shallower the container, the quicker the granita will freeze).
Cover with a lid, foil or plastic wrap. Freeze the mixture 1 to 2 hours, until it is solid around the edges. Take the container out of the freezer and scrape the ice with a fork, mixing it from the edges into the center.
Repeat this scraping and mixing process every 30 minutes or so (at least three times) until the entire mixture has turned into small, sequined ice flakes. When ready to serve, "rake" with a fork to loosen the granita and spoon into serving dishes.
Quick Granita Method:
Note: This method is faster, but the granita will have a different texture—less icy and more slushy.
Pour the granita mixture into ice trays, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to freeze solid. Process the cubes in a food processor when you're ready to serve.