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Orange-Marsala Gelatin

Gelatina di Arancia

SERVES 8

Gelatina is a shimmering, smooth dessert made from the juice of citrus fruits and unflavored gelatin that no packaged sweetened gelatin could ever match. The best gelatin is made in Sicily from intensely sweet fruits such as lemons, oranges, tangerines, and grapefruits. Mineola or mandarin oranges are suggested to approximate the flavor of Sicilian orange gelatina.

Ingredients

3 packages unflavored gelatin

1 1/2 cups water

3/4 cup sugar

2 cups fresh orange juice (from 7 to 8 medium Mineola or mandarin oranges, 8 "half-shells" reserved)

1/4 cup sweet Marsala wine

Fresh mint leaves for garnish

Directions

In a small saucepan, soften the gelatin in ½ cup of the water. Heat over low heat, stirring until the gelatin dissolves completely. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, combine the remaining 1 cup water and the sugar and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and stir in the gelatin with a wooden spoon. Stir in the orange juice and wine. Pour the mixture into a rectangular or square dish and chill for at least several hours, or until the gelatin is set.

To serve, scoop the gelatin from the dish with a spoon, or cut it into cubes with a knife, and fill the reserved orange shell halves. Garnish each one with a mint leaf.

Variation: The gelatina can also be poured into a decorative mold and then unmolded on a serving platter. You can also fill the "orange" cups before dinner and store them in the freezer until it's time to serve them.

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