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Pretty in Pink
May 19th, 2006



Here's how to get the Mother's Day present you want (or any present for that matter) in my household:

1. Send email to husband a few days before Mother's Day with a link to your desired gift online.
2. Make sure to ask him if he got the email when you get home from work. Point out the fabulous price.
3. When told that there isn't time to order anything online in time for the holiday, remind him of the existence of actual brick and mortar stores here in Seattle.
4. When your husband declares that you are not his mother and therefore he shouldn't have to buy you a present, remind him that the 6 year old and the 3 year old do not in fact have their own credit cards (yet) or method of transportation and that maybe, just maybe, their father might be a good choice to take them by the hand and lead them to a local pavilion of commerce where 'they' can buy a present for their beloved mother.
5. On Mother's Day morning gratefully and joyfully receive vase of flowers from 6 year old who made them at school out of a mason jar, tissue paper, starch, and pipe cleaners. Be honestly touched at how excited he is to give them to you.
6. Go out to the mall that afternoon and buy your own damn present.

And that's how I came to be the proud new owner of an icecream maker. And really, I don't care that I had to go buy it myself, truthfully the homemade gift from Jay and the big proud smile on his face are much more precious. But I am very excited about my new icecream maker. I love icecream and all of its brethren - frozen yogurt, ices, granitas, sorbets, and slushies. Jim and the boys just want chocolate icecream with as many bits of things as possible swirled in, but I'm excited about exploring the world of frozen fruit - berry sorbet, peach frozen yogurt, frozen mango lassies. I can't wait.

So to christen my new appliance I made what I'm calling a Watermelon Rose Granita. I'm not sure I quite have all the kinks worked out of the process yet, and I had to finish the process in tupperware in the freezer, but the result is awfully pretty and pink don't you think? I saw a recipe for a Rose Ice in a low-carb cookbook at my parents' house last weekend and made a mental note in my head to try something like it someday. The recipe included coconut cream, sweetened condensed milk, and pink food coloring, but we had a half of a giant watermelon hogging up valuable fridge space and I decided to make a watermelon ice with rose water instead. That way we'd have the pretty pink color without the dye.

This granita would make an excellent palate refresher for a Middle Eastern themed meal or a cool way to finish up a meal of barbecued chicken. You could definitely make it without an icecream maker as the finished texture even with the machine is icy rather than creamy. If you don't like rose water, you could make it with just the watermelon, or add a few tablespoons of your favorite berry liqueur. Personally I'm wondering what the addition of some freshly squeezed pink grapefruit would do for the watermelon, and as more of the behemoth melon still lurks in the fridge, I just may get a chance to find out.


Watermelon Rose Granita
makes one quart

1 quart peeled and chopped seedless watermelon
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp rose water
2 egg whites (optional)
rose petals for decoration (also optional)


Cook the sugar and lime juice over low heat in a small saucepan until the sugar is dissolved, stirring often. Put the cubes of watermelon in a blender or food processor and blend to a puree (I love that part!). Add the sugar lime syrup and the rose water and blend again. Pour the puree into an icecream maker and process until thick, about twenty minutes. If you are using the egg whites, make sure they are from a trusted egg purveyor, beat them lightly and add them to the icecream maker after about 15 minutes. This is supposed to make the texture more like a sherbet.

My granita was thick but still not frozen after twenty minutes. I kept the motor running but actually things got worse as it went on as the chilled container began to defrost. So if you want a thicker consistency after the twenty minutes are up, put the granita in a freezer safe container and chuck it in the freezer for a couple of hours.

To make without an icecream maker:
I would leave out the egg whites. Instead of adding the puree to an icecream maker, pour it into a freezer safe container with a lid. Put it in the freezer. Remove every twenty minutes and scrape with a fork to break up the ice crystals. Continue until the granita is completely frozen and fluffy.

Decorating with rose petals is completely optional but awfully pretty.

-Kymm
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Comments

I am proud of you for getting your own mother's day present from the boys via Jim...I just wrote and erased and wrote and erased. Jim is Jim and while I think he should have gotten the ice cream maker for you from the store, he has many redeeming qualitites and you got your ice cream maker. So I am just going to skip on by this and get to my question: what is rose water and how does one acquire it? Do you think this will work without the icecream maker? I am going to try it - once the mystery of rose water is unveiled to me.

-posted by stephie on May 22nd, 2006
Rose water (also called Rose Flower Water or Rosewater) is made from distilled rose petals. It's used in middle eastern baking (see my mamoul cookie post from last month) and tastes like roses smell. Some people like it and some don't, it is an intense perfumey taste and you really only want to use a few drops at a time.

Some grocery stores carry it either in the drink mixers, baking ingredients, or ethnic food aisles. If you can't find it there look for a middle eastern specialty grocery store or order online. I know that carry it at Baker's Catalogue and Amazon. But you certainly should be able to find it in Chicago.

And yes, I do think this recipe would work without the icecream maker, just remember to stir it with a fork every half hour or so until it's completely frozen.

-posted by kymm on May 22nd, 2006
oh that sounds lovely. I'm have a weakness for rose flavoured things--but this really looks great. I've never had watermelon and rose together.

-posted by tejal on May 23rd, 2006
This is delicious. I made it with out an ice cream maker and it worked just fine. I made a second batch with water melon, lime juice, lime zest, mint, and grand marnier instead of sugar. This was also good. I look forward to playing with lots of variations this summer!

-posted by stephanie on May 28th, 2006
I'm so glad it worked Steph! Ooh, the Grand Marnier and mint sound divine. Did you stir fresh mint into the puree or cook it in the syrup and strain it?

Tejal I don't think I've ever had watermelon and rose together either, but I like it. Maybe I'll start matching up all my flavors by color - lime and spinach, bannanas and eggs, I'll be hailed as a culinary genious (until someone actually tastes the food)!

-posted by kymm on May 30th, 2006
I just tossed everything in the blender. I didn't add any sugar (although the grand marnier surely has some). I used two large juicy limes for both the juice and their zest and quite a bit of mint. Also, I didn't stir the mixture in the freezer. It froze solid, but a good ice cream scooper made nice icey curls of refreshing goodness.

-posted by steph on May 31st, 2006
© 2006, Kimberly Cooperrider | kymmco@excite.com