3 Yummy Possibilities When Life Gives You Melons
As summer’s most hydrating fruit, watermelons are nutritional powerhouses rich in vitamins A and C, Potassium, Magnesium and Lycopene (in the red melon).
What’s even more amazing is that besides the fruit part (red or yellow), which alone is what is consumed usually, the rind with the white pulp and the green outer skin renders itself to wonderful nourishment possibilities – if you have a juicer. Among other phytonutrients, the rind is a particularly rich source of Citrulline – an amino acid that helps relax and dilate blood vessels.
A medium-sized melon can make about three liters of juice, half of it from the rind alone, which makes watermelon a highly cost-effective and nutritious hydration option.
The rind yields a wonderfully refreshing chlorophyll-rich green juice that tastes better than cucumber juice. Make sure to get melons that are organic, or are from a farmers market (if you’re juicing the outer skin). Here are three cool options that help make the most of your melons:
- Juice the pulp from a yellow or red watermelon (including any seeds) to make a tall glass full.
- Squeeze in half a lime.
- Garnish with mint, if desired, and serve chilled.
Variations: Replace half the pulp, above, with strips of the green & white skin/rind in your juicer.
Use just the skin/rind in the recipe for a green version of the Melonade without the sweetness.
A great fizzy way to enjoy watermelon juice without the sugar and with added benefits of healthy probiotic bacteria!
- Juice the pulp (include the seeds, if any) of a ripe watermelon to get about a liter of juice.
- Strain out any of the pulp solids that could have snuck into the juice and transfer the juice into a clean tall glass bottle that can be closed airtight.
- Add any of the below to the juice above, mix well, and close the bottle tight.
The following options can be used as the starter for the fermentation:
- 2-3 probiotic capsules. Twist and break them open and drop the contents into the juice.
- 70 milliliters of Kombucha (any store-bought variety), Coconut Water Kefir or any other probiotic beverage.
Fermentation times will vary and will depend on the culture used, the sweetness of the melon and the ambient temperature. In general, the above mixture should ferment and turn fizzy in about 24 hours at above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure to give it a taste along the way when it starts bubbling at the top, as you may not want your creation to over-ferment and turn really sour and vinegary.
As soon as it reaches your desired level of sourness, move it to the refrigerator. Serve chilled and, close the bottle tightly after every use to maintain the fizz.
3. Melon-Chia-Lime pudding
This serves as a highly hydrating and nutritious summer snack or dessert.
- Soak 2 tablespoons of Chia seeds in about 6 ounces of water for at least half an hour. (If you’re new to these super seeds. they hold tremendous nutritional value. When soaked, they become gelatinous, and the enzymes get activated rendering them easier to digest.)
- Squeeze half a lime to the above mixture. Stir well.
- Pour over watermelon chunks in a bowl. Garnish as desired and enjoy!