Everything I love about this appetizer is what makes it perfect for bachelorette parties, bridal showers, or any festive Spring or Summer events.
And what do I love about it? Well . . . apart from its beauty, it's full of sweet and spicy flavors and is incredibly refreshing all at once. It's a really delicious, fun way to get the party started. (If you choose to add the vodka, it's almost like a small cocktail bite.)
Lime Granita-Mango Salsa Bites
Makes about three dozen
Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Active Work Time: 30 minutes
For the granita:
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon lime zest (from about 2 limes)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 3 limes)
1 tablespoon orange juice
3 tablespoons vodka (optional)
For the salsa:
1/2 cup peeled and finely diced mango
1 1/2 tablespoons finely diced shallots
1/4 cup seeded and finely diced tomato
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro
About 1/4 teaspoon finely chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, or more to taste
Pinch of sea salt
2 English cucumbers (these are also called Japanese or hot house cucumbers)
- Make the granita: Add the water, sugar, and lime zest to a small saucepan, place it over medium heat, and cook just long enough to dissolve the sugar, about three minutes. Let the sugar mixture cool to room temperature and then add the lime juice, orange juice, and if you're using it, the vodka. Stir to blend.
- Pour the mixture into a shallow dish (tupperware is fine), cover it with plastic wrap and place it in the freezer until the edges are frozen, about 30 minutes. Scrape the ice from the edges with a fork, mixing it into the center. Don't stir as you would a batter, you should almost be chopping it up as you move the ice around. Repeat this scraping and mixing process every 20 minutes or so, until it's fully frozen and flaky. Keep this in the freezer until you're ready to use it.
- Make the salsa: Mix all the salsa ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. Keep it covered in the refrigerator until you're ready to use it.
- Assemble the bites: Peel the cucumbers and slice them into about three dozen, 1/2-inch-thick rounds. Using a melon baller or teaspoon very gently scoop out the seeds, about half way to the bottom, not all the way through. This hollowed-out space is where the granita and salsa will sit. Place the slices on a paper towel, and then place another one on top and gently press down to remove some of the moisture.
- Just before you're ready to serve, with the cucumber slices still on the paper towel, add about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the granita to the center of each one, followed by about 1 teaspoon of the salsa directly on top. Carefully transfer to a platter and serve immediately.