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We are smack in middle of the dog days of summer: It’s hot, it’s humid, and the sun shines until 9 PM. Well, that's likely the case for most of you. I live in Colorado -- not in Denver where it's 100 degrees, but up in the mountains of Summit County, where the high for today was 62.
Some day I will make it to Italy for the summer, but until then, I can make myself some Italian ice and pretend I am walking the streets of Rome. The great thing about this recipe is that it's so easy: It takes just minutes to prepare, and there's no special ice cream maker required. Just use a blender or food processor, then let the freezer do the heavy lifting.
Makes 4 cups
3 cups fresh fruit of your choice
2 to 4 tablespoons honey or granulated sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 cups ice
Add the fruit (I used strawberries, pineapple, and blueberries), honey or sugar (I used 2 tablespoons of honey), lemon juice, and 2 cups of ice to the bowl of a food processor or a high-powered blender.
Blend the mixture until chunky, and then add the remaining cup of ice. Blend until completely smooth.
Pour the mixture into a 9- by 13-inch baking dish and place it in the freezer for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, remove the Italian ice from the freezer and scrape it with a fork until slushy. Place it back in the freezer for another 2 hours.
After the 2 hours are up, you can scoop the ice into cups. If it's too frozen-solid to scoop, either let the ice sit out for 5 minutes so that it softens, or add it to a blender and blend until the mixture has a slushy consistency.
Scoop your Italian ice into cups and enjoy it with a colorful spoon. I highly recommend making multiple flavors, and serving them together for a real treat.
Photos by Tieghan Gerard