In August, I posted the recipe for my favorite iced tea, a citrusy hibiscus tea with mint. It might seem strange that in the midst of winter I’m posting another hibiscus tea recipe, this time for a frozen dish. But even in winter, I enjoy an occasional frozen treat. It can be the perfect antidote to a rich, heavy meal — either as a frozen dessert or as a little palate cleanser between courses to refresh the tastebuds. Here I’ve combined the deep red, somewhat berry-like and floral hibiscus tea with some bright clementine and a little lime juice. It’s just a smidgen sweet, it’s refreshing, and it’s oh-so-pretty!
Hibiscus Tea and Clementine Granita
(Inspired by this Food and Wine recipe for Hibiscus & Grapefruit Sorbet)
- 2 cups boiling water
- 2 hibiscus teabags (I use Steven Smith’s Big Hibiscus, but close alternatives would be Red Zinger, Tazo Passion or other hibiscus tea blends)
- Juice of 5 clementines and 1 1/2 limes (1 cup)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- Optional: mint leaves for garnish
Directions: Bring water to a boil and steep the 2 teabags for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, juice the clementines and limes. Remove the teabags and add the sugar, and stir well to dissolve, for about 2 minutes. Add the juice and mix well. Transfer to a pre-chilled ice cream machine bowl and churn according to machine directions (I let mine churn for 25 minutes). Cover and transfer to the freezer; let it solidify for at least 3 hours. When ready to serve, scrape the surface of the ice with a sharp spoon or ice cream scoop to create little pink shavings of ice crystals and spoon out into bowls. Garnish with fresh mint leaves if desired. Keeps for 4 days in the freezer if well-sealed.
Tip 1: Serving in pre-chilled bowls helps keep the ice shavings from melting.
Tip 2: Scraping the ice requires considerable muscle; you might want to enlist some brawny help in the kitchen at serving time if you are serving many at once!