July is Watermelon Month! Celebrate with these Local Recipes!

Watermelon is a good fruit. You can eat, drink or wash your face with it — all at once. To celebrate National Watermelon Month, we asked local restaurants and community chefs for interesting recipes related to the popular summertime fruit. A few of our favorites are below, but first we have a few tips for picking a yummy watermelon.

3 Steps to Picking a Good Watermelon
[1] Look it over:
Find a firm, symmetrical watermelon that has no bruises, cuts or dents.
[2] Knock it: Knock on your stomach, forehead and chest. A ripe melon will feel the same as your chest.
[3] Flip it: You should find a yellow spot on the belly of the melon where it has been sitting on the ground.


Alexander’s: Coconut Watermelon Mojito

4-6 large mint leaves
3/4 ounce simple syrup
3 lime wedges
1 1/2 ounces Two Traditions Toasted Coconut Rum
3 ounces fresh watermelon puree
Splash of club soda

[1] Muddle mint leaves, simple syrup and two lime wedges in a mojito glass.
[2] Stir in watermelon puree, rum and ice cubes.
[3] Top with club soda.
[4] Garnish with a lime wedge.

Healthy Habit: Watermelon Arugula Salad with Feta

1 medium seedless watermelon
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
4 ounces of Baby Arugula
1/2 medium red onion
2 cups balsamic vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt & Pepper

[1] Take the 2 cups of balsamic vinegar and pour into a medium sauce pan. Place over stovetop burner and turn to medium flame. Let this reduce to about half. When done, set aside in a mason jar or similar and let cool to room temperature. Place in refrigerator to chill for at least an hour. [2] Slice red onion as thin as possible. When available use a mandoline to create thin slices. Place sliced red onions in a bowl of ice water to remove some of the sulfur and harsh taste onions can have. Leave in ice water for at least 5 minutes. Remove from ice water and place over a dry towel. Reserve and use for garnish. [3] Remove rind from watermelon. Cut 3/4 inch cubes or desired shape. Feel free to make oblique cuts for more rustic feel when plating. [4] In a large mixing bowl or salad bowl place 4 ounces of baby arugula and about 1 to 1 1/2 cup of watermelon. Watermelon and arugula should be balanced and not have one ingredient overpower the other. Lightly toss in feta cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. [5] When balsamic is chilled properly, it should have a syrup-like consistency. Drizzle lightly over watermelon salad. Finish by drizzling extra virgin olive oil over salad and garnish with red onions. Dig in!

Captain Woody’s: Marinated Shrimp and Watermelon Salad

Ingredients (garlic wine sauce)
3 tablespoons shallots, minced
3 tablespoons garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 turns freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups veal stock
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

[1] Combine the shallots, garlic, salt and pepper in a small saucepan over high heat. Stir in the stock and the wine and bring to a boil. [2] Cook over high heat for 15 minutes. Swirl in the butter, remove from the heat, and continue to whisk in the butter until thoroughly incorporated.

Ingredients (pomegranate molasses vinaigrette)
3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup olive oil

[1] Whisk pomegranate molasses, vinegar, mustard, and honey in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper.
[2] Whisking constantly, gradually add oil until emulsified; season with salt, pepper, and more honey, if desired.
[3] Cover and chill.

Other Ingredients
1 pound shrimp
1 medium seedless watermelon, large dice
2 cups feta cheese, crumbled
1 cup basil leaves, coarsely chopped
2 cups baby spinach spring mix
1 avocado, sliced

[1] Marinate shrimp in garlic wine sauce for 5 minutes. [2] Skewer and grill for two minutes on each side. [3] In a large bowl, mix watermelon, feta, basil, baby spinach and avocado. [4] Top with shrimp skewer and vinaigrette. Enjoy!

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