Saturday, April 27, 2013

Chocolate Cabernet Espresso Granita With Lemon Zest Whipped Cream

  • 2 C water
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 C heavy whipping cream
  • 1 Cup of "good" Cabernet (make sure it is one you would drink, not cooking wine)
  • 1/4 C fresh brewed espresso
  • 1 T cocoa powder
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1 t lemon zest (plus more for garnish)
  • Chocolate shavings (for garnish---you can use a vegetable peeler and any chocolate bar/candy)
  1. In a small sauce pan, combine water and 2/3 C sugar to make a syrup (it is not a simple syrup, which is typically equal parts sugar and water...that would be too sweet for this recipe).
  2. Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently until sugar dissolves. 
  3. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  4. Brew 2 double espresso shots and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  5. In a small bowl, combine cocoa powder and 2 T of syrup.
  6. Whisk well (and it will take effort) to thoroughly combine.  You do not want any granules of cocoa powder, so be sure to whisk until completely smooth.
  7. In a glass baking dish, combine cocoa mixture, 1 C syrup, wine, and 1/4 C espresso.
  8. Whisk until well combined.  It will become a dull red/brick color, but will deepen during the freezing process.
  9. Place covered in freezer for two hours.
  10. Remove cover and scrape with a fork using back and forth and diagonal motions. 
  11. Re-cover the mix and place back in the freezer for at least one hour.
  12. In a medium mixing bowl, combine whipping cream, 1/3 C sugar, vanilla extract and 1 t of lemon zest.
  13. Beat on low, and gradually increase speed until you have solid peaks (about 3-4 minutes).
  14. Remove granita from freezer and repeat scraping process.
  15. Scoop into a cappuccino mug or into a wine glass.
  16. Top with a dollop of whipped cream.
  17. Garnish with chocolate shavings and lemon zest.
PLEASE NOTE:  This is not like cooking with alcohol, and it is not suitable for children.  This made two one cup servings. You will also have leftover syrup - use to flavor ice teas, lemonades, or make cocktails. Enjoy, responsibly!