A Yogurt Granita Is Cooler Than Fro-Yo
Starting the day with a bowl of yogurt is potentially nutritious, sure, but let’s get real: it can be boring. Even when it's dressed up with berries or granola, that cool cup of yogurt can fall flat. Instead of spooning up more fruit on the bottom, try a yogurt granita. Granitas are an Italian dish typically made from blended fruit and water. The liquid is partially frozen, scraped up, then re-frozen and re-scraped until it resembles fluffy snow or shaved ice. While you can make a granita with any liquid (shout out the the coffee granita I made last week when it was too hot for any other form of caffeination), yogurt is an optimal choice for treating a granita as a meal.
Start with 4 cups of any flavor whole-milk yogurt (you can also use Greek-style yogurt thinned with a bit of whole milk). Mild flavors like vanilla, maple, lemon, and coconut yogurt work well, as you’re about to add fresh fruit to the granita, but you can do what your stomach tells you, and go fruitier if you desire. If you only have plain yogurt, mix ¼ cup of honey or maple syrup into the yogurt, or feel free to stick with unsweetened.
Slice 3 cups of fruits that pair well together (try peaches and raspberries, plums and blackberries, or strawberries and blueberries) keeping in mind the fruit should complement whatever flavor yogurt you’ve chosen—though it’s obviously less of a concern if you’re using vanilla, maple, or plain yogurt.
Stir the sliced fruit into the yogurt, mushing it up a bit if you’d like. For a more complex and exciting burst of flavor, stir in a few thinly sliced leaves of mint or sage, or 2 teaspoons of grated fresh ginger or citrus zest. Pour the mixture into a shallow metal baking pan and place it in the freezer.
After 30 minutes, use a firm spatula or a fork to break up any ice crystals that have started forming in the yogurt mixture. Put the tray back in the freezer and continue to freeze, then break up icy bits every 30 minutes until the yogurt resembles shaved ice—this should take about 2 hours.
Scoop the yogurt granita into a bowl and serve with a handful of granola, shredded coconut, and sliced bananas or other fresh fruit.