Last month it was all about mangoes. Guess what, my four-year-old got the hubby to pick up a giant watermelon just because he had a hankering for watermelon. Now how much watermelon do you think a four-year-old can really eat?And his hankering for watermelon seems to be long gone already. I think the giant green ball was just eye candy. Now I’ll have to make eye candy out of it with every unique watermelon recipe that I can come up with. So, if you haven’t figured it out already, I’m dedicating August to watermelon recipes.
Did you know that watermelon originates from southern Africa where it grows wild? It actually thrives in tropical and subtropical temperatures, which explains why it was first seen cultivating outside of Africa in India and China. It seems like the natural cycle of creation for a fruit that consists of almost entirely water to grow in hot regions where the people need nourishment from water the most. It’s the natural balance of things. Watermelon fruit is 91% water and contains 6% sugars. With low fat content watermelon is one of the most refreshing and healthy fruit you can eat.
I’m kicking off this month of summer watermelon recipes with a cooling treat that translates across continents – Watermelon Italian Ice. Italian Ice, or Granita as the Italians term it, is a frozen mixture of fruit juice and puree with sugar. It’s scooped into a paper cup just like an American snow cone is sold by a street vendor. Only Italian Ice is much more fresh compared to a snow cone, which is essentially ice topped with artificially flavored syrup. Hope you enjoy this fresh concoction of Watermelon Italian Ice.
2 cups cubed watermelon
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Sprigs of mint for garnish
- Place all ingredients in a blender.
- Pulse a few times until smooth (don't over blend).
- Pour mixture into a baking pan.
- Cover and freeze until firm, overnight.
- Next day, take a fork and scrape the entire frozen mixture.
- To serve scoop ice in small pretty cups or pretty glassware.