granita siciliana granita di limone granita al caffè

It’s easy to say “lemon granita” …

The Arabs, in fact, brought with them the recipe for sherbet, an iced drink that was aromatised with fruit juices or with rose water. Over the centuries the recipe was modified and acquired different characteristics depending on the area of the island where it was prepared.

The mark of Municipal denomination (De.Co.) has recently been set up for a number of Messina specialities, such as, for example, the lemon and coffee granitas, which are specialities particular to this area, and there are veritable contests to find the best granita.

For Sicilians lemon granita is a true institution; it’s served together with a brioscia, the “brioche with a hat”, and preparing it is by no means simple. There are various versions and every bar and ice cream parlour has its own secret recipe on the menu.

Besides this recipe, there are several other flavours: there are versions with almond, jasmine, pistachio and, perhaps even more popular than lemon granita, the version with coffee.
The “half with cream” which, even though the flavour isn’t specified, refers exclusively to coffee granita, was created after the 1960s: before it was served in a large glass and accompanied by crusty bread, and those who wanted a smaller version asked, precisely for “half”. It then became a habit to serve it in a smaller glass.


The current temperatures are a perfect excuse for preparing a lemon granita at home and therefore we will share with you the recipe published on the site My Personal Trainer:




  •  500 ml of water
  • 250 g of sugar
  • 500 ml of untreated lemon juice



  1. Pour water and sugar into a small casserole dish, and then bring it to the boil while continuing to stir. A syrup will form.
  2. Leave the syrup to cool, before at room temperature and then in the fridge.
  3. In the meantime, wash the lemons (preferably not treated), cut them in half and collect the juice.
  4. Filter the juice through a colander: this operation is optional.
  5. Add the lemon juice to the cold sugar syrup.
  6. Pour the mix into a freezer tray or into a Pyrex jug. Put everything into the freezer. Remove the tray after a couple of hours and scrape off the crystallised parts with a palette or a spoon. Put it back into the freezer.
  1. Repeat the operation every 2 hours, until reaching the desired consistency. The freezing process requires around 8-10 hours, depending on the dimension of the tray.

Have a great summer!