It’s the middle of a work week, school is closed for the day. Daddy is toiling away in an airconditioned cube, twenty miles away. But Mommy’s schedule surely allows for a picnic in the park. The sun is falling in a million shards through the gaps in the bright green canopy under a stately oak. And Mommy, as usual, is juggling scores of things..shooing the ants away, stacking up the sandwiches, leafing through the dear pages of Pomegranate Soup, watching over the chirpy six-year-old basking in the open sun while chasing butterflies, and shuffling her iTunes playlist. When Joplin’s voice pours out of the speakers, crooning, “…child, your living’s easy..” she decrees lunchtime. Glancing over her SPF-coated, freckled arms, she holds them out, to be rushed into moments later by the tautly tanned butterfly-chaser who, it appears, was also gathering a bunch of dandelions, all feathery and tickly, especially for Mommy. The sandwiches are then duly wolfed down, and while the remnants are picked up and directed to the trash can, Mommy unlocks a small cooler, bearing a special slushy treat. Shrilly, feverish giggles dissolve in the air around, with eyebrows dancing in sweet anticipation. And out comes the glass dish, its contents melony, peach-tinted, and spiced-up..enticing both the giggly, dessert-hungry mouths. Scoop after glossy scoop, it’s all relished and smacked down to the last crystals, and alack, there will be none left for the ants to feast on..unless they can crawl their way up to two sticky chins. And Daddy will quite possibly be sorry for what he missed.
Masala Cantaloupe Granita
1/4 Medium-sized cantaloupe, cut into chunks
1/4 Cup water
1/4 Cup Sugar
A handful of mint leaves
Whole spices – 1 cardamom, 2 cloves, a small piece of cinnamon, a few peppercorns
A dash of salt
The juice of half a lime, plus 4-5 thinly sliced lime wedges
Puree the cantaloupe chunks and keep aside in a glass dish or baking tray. Make a simple syrup by boiling the water with sugar, mint leaves, whole spices and salt. Once it cools, strain it into the puree, add the lime juice and the wedges, and freeze for about 2 hours, forking through it every 25-30 minutes. Serve in sugar, salt or even sprinkle-rimmed fancy glasses or recyclable picnic cups (swipe the rims of glasses or cups with a slice of lime, and dip them in salt, sugar or your favorite color of sprinkles) and enjoy when it’s cool and slushy..before the heat gets to it and makes it all runny.
Out Melony Ice is being shared with –