Five chefs – five different ways with watermelon! From snacks to salads, here are five watermelon recipes that’ll make your mouth water.
1. Watermelon with fresh mint and lime syrup
“Watermelon is the best thing in the world to eat first thing in the morning because its high water content really helps to flush your body out,” Curtis Stone.
⅓ cup sugar
Grated zest and juice of 1 lime
¼ cup thinly sliced fresh mint leaves
½ large oval watermelon
Stir the sugar, 2 tablespoons of water, lime zest, and 1½ tablespoons of lime juice in a small heavy saucepan over high heat until the sugar dissolves and the syrup comes to a boil. Let the syrup cool completely, and then refrigerate it until cold.
Strain the chilled syrup into a small bowl and stir in the mint. Allow the mint to infuse into the syrup for at least 5 minutes.
Place the watermelon, cut side down, on a work surface. Using a large sharp knife, cut the watermelon horizontally to form a 5cm-thick slab. (Reserve the remaining watermelon for another use.)
Trim away the rind and then cut the slab into 5cm chunks. Transfer the watermelon chunks to a large serving platter, keeping the chunks in a single layer and maintaining the shape of the slab. Pour the cold syrup over the watermelon and serve.
[Courtesy of www.curtisstone.com]
2. Watermelon salsa
“Peppers and onions spice up refreshing watermelon for a sassy summer salsa,” Rachel Ray.
3 cups watermelon, cut into small dice
1 cucumber, seeded and cut into small dice
2 jalapeño peppers, minced
1 small red onion, cut into small dice
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
¼ cup mint, chopped
Zest and juice of 2 limes
Salt and pepper
Combine the watermelon, cucumber, jalapeños, red onion, cilantro, mint, lime zest and juice in a serving dish. Season with salt just before you serve to keep the watermelon from extracting its juice.
Serve with whole grain tortilla chips or over steak, chicken or fish.
[Courtesy of www.rachaelray.com]
3. Watermelon granita
“A simple introduction into the world of flavoured ices, granitas, and sorbets!” Emeril Lagasse.
5 cups peeled and seeded watermelon chunks (from about a 1.3kg slice of watermelon)
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Place the watermelon chunks in the bowl of a blender or a food processor, replace the top, and blend on high speed until very smooth. Turn the blender off.
Transfer the watermelon puree to a mixing bowl and add the sugar and lime juice.
Stir with a wooden spoon until the sugar is completely dissolved, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Transfer the mixing bowl to the freezer and freeze for 30 minutes.
Remove the bowl from the freezer and use a fork to scrape any ice crystals from the sides of the bowl. Stir to incorporate the crystals. Return to the freezer.
Repeat this scraping process every 30 minutes, or until the consistency is “snowy” when scraped with a fork or spoon, at least 4 hours. Then scoop into bowls or dessert glasses and serve.
[Courtesy of http://emerils.com]
4. Watermelon salad with feta, lime and mint
“Watermelon and feta may seem like an unusual combination, but the sweetness of the watermelon balances perfectly with the salty softness of the feta, and this dish makes an ideal accompaniment to barbecued meats,” Rachel Allen.
200g feta cheese, crumbled into pieces, roughly 1 – 2cm squares
Finely grated zest and juice of one lime
2 teaspoons mint, chopped
Peel, deseed and chop the watermelon into 4cm pieces. Place in a bowl, and add the crumbled feta, the finely grated lime zest, the lime juice and the chopped mint.
Toss gently and serve as soon as possible, ideally within an hour or so of making.
[Courtesy of www.rachelallen.com]
5. Mascarpone-filled watermelon
Jazz up any summer menu with this delicious dessert, courtesy of Giada de Laurentiis.
About 25 watermelon cubes
1 medium seedless watermelon, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 cup heavy cream, chilled
1 cup (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese, chilled
⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon agave syrup
Zest of 1 lime
1 lime, halved
⅓ cup mini chocolate chips
With a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon, scoop out the centre of each watermelon cube. Set the cubes scooped-side-down on a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the cream, mascarpone, cinnamon, vanilla, agave, lime zest and the juice of one of the lime halves. Beat until nice and thick using a hand mixer. Set aside.
Squeeze the remaining lime half over the watermelon. Flip the watermelon cubes over and fill each with 1 teaspoon of the mascarpone filling. Top with chocolate chips and serve.
[Courtesy of www.giadadelaurentiis.com]