How to make granita, an icy summer refresher

A granita is made up of sweetened fruit juice or pureed fruit that is frozen and raked/massaged to a texture that’s crystalline instead of smooth. A granita is not a sorbet. KCRW’s Evan Kleiman says it’s like a frozen Mexican fruit drink.  

The easiest way to make granita: 

Puree the fruit of your choice.
Add sugar or sugar syrup to taste.
Add a squeeze of lemon or lime for lift.
Put the mixture in a zip top bag.
Freeze it.
Start massaging the bag after an hour or so when the ice crystals start to form.
Continue to massage the bag once per hour until the mixture is a crystalline icy mass.

Alternate way to make granita:  

Pour your sweetened, pureed fruit into a 9 x 13 pan.
Set it in the freezer. 
When the crystals start to form around the edges and top of the pan, take a fork and rake the crystals into the unfrozen liquid.
Repeat two or three more times over three to four hours.

Here’s a melon-specific granita recipe

How to make sugar syrup:

Put equal parts sugar and water in a pan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is completely melted. Store in the refrigerator.