- 2 cups water
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup basil leaves
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice
For the sgroppino:
- 1 ounce vodka
- 3 ounces chilled Prosecco
- Make the lemon-basil syrup: In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, combine water, sugar and salt. Bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, stir in basil and steep 10 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a mixing bowl. Squeeze all liquid from basil and discard. Stir in lemon juice.
- Make the granita: Pour syrup into a 9-by-9-inch cake pan, and place in freezer. Let freeze partially, about 1 hour, then drag the tines of a fork through mixture to break up ice crystals, and return to freezer. Repeat process until you have a shard-like, icy granita. Total time will vary depending on temperature of freezer. Give it at least 4 hours.
- To serve the granita in frozen lemons: (Makes about 5 lemon desserts.) Before making granita, take a tiny slice off bottom of each lemon so it sits upright. Make a lid by slicing across lemon 1 inch from top. Squeeze out juice and reserve for making granita. Scoop out any remaining seeds and pulp from lemons. Set lemons on a small sheet tray, and place in freezer. When granita is ready, fill frozen lemons and put lids on top. Keep in freezer until ready to serve.
- To make sorbet: Mix syrup as directed in step 1 and pour into an ice-cream maker. Churn until frozen.
- To make a sgroppino cocktail: To a chilled coupe or flute, add one 1 scoop granita or sorbet. Top with 1 ounce vodka and 3 ounces chilled Prosecco.