Watermelon granita with lemon cream

Watermelon granita with lemon cream


1 person made this

About this recipe: This watermelon granita served with a sweet lemon cream made with labneh is a marriage of two cuisines - Italian and Middle Eastern. The granita can be stored in the freezer and prepared days or weeks ahead. Serve the granita and labneh-lemon cream with a drizzle of honey and a sprig of mint.

Leah Hadad

Serves: 12 

  • Granita
  • 160ml water
  • 135g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 leaves fresh mint
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 pinch coarse sea salt
  • 285g cubed, seeded watermelon
  • Lemon cream
  • 225g labneh (thick Lebanese-style yogurt)
  • 1 tablespoon honey, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1/2 lemon, zested
  • 3 tablespoons water, or as needed

Prep:20min  ›  Cook:5min  ›  Extra time:1hr30min freezing  ›  Ready in:1hr55min 

  1. Combine water, sugar, vanilla extract and fresh mint in a heavy bottomed saucepan; bring to the boil. Remove from heat; mix in lime juice and salt.
  2. Place watermelon in batches in a blender. Cover and blend until smooth. Strain through a sieve into a large bowl, using a spoon to press out as much juice as possible; stir in sugar mixture.
  3. Pour watermelon mixture into a rectangular glass dish. Freeze, scraping the surface every 30 minutes with a fork until ice crystals form throughout, 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  4. Mix labneh, honey, lemon juice and lemon zest together in a small bowl. Whisk in water 1 teaspoon at a time until consistency is light and creamy. Top granita with cream.


If granita is too hard when removed from the freezer, let it sit at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes. Covered with cling film, the granita can be kept in the freezer for a few months.

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