Put the lime in the coconut……


Fresh off the plane from a decadent trip to Puerto Rico, I feel like I need to give a little ode to watermelon.  In recent history I have stayed away from buying watermelons, I tend to –I am NOT kidding you-always purchase grainy watermelons. So much so that I stopped buying them whole and only purchase the precut slices. How ridiculous is that?
View from our balcony, ocean looming just past the palm trees
So, I have now promised myself that I will try, try and try again with this beautiful red melon made mostly of water (and delicousness). Part of this inspiration came from a very small but perfectly executed amuse bouche I received from the chef the last two nights of my stay. On a pristine white plate, a single perfect cube of watermelon sat. gently dolloped on top was the creamiest goat cheese, a lovely drizzle of olive oil and a generous shower of cracked pepper. The crisp burst of sweet water from the melon married so well with the mouthfeel of the cheese, savory fruitiness of the olive oil and the sharpness from the cracked pepper. and I found myself wanting more of it! Simultaneously refreshing/crisp and rich/decadent. And here I am. Post vacation (insert big sigh and “whoa is me”) and wanting to eat watermelon everything. So, below are two recipes that I am going to prepare over the next few days and welcome into my belly. And maybe you should too!
Sweet and Savory Watermelon Salad
Inspired by FERN at the St.Regis Puerto Rico Resort
gluten free, egg free, nut free
  • 2 big slices watermelon, cut into bite size cubes
  • 4 oz. very creamy goat cheese (rule of thumb- the more expensive the goat cheese, more often than not the better and creamier it will be)
  • a nice drizzle of good quality olive oil (nice and green!)
  • fresh cracked pepper
DIRECTIONS
    1. Place the watermelon in the bottom of your serving bowl.
    2. Top with the goat cheese, it probably won’t “crumble” because it is so creamy, so just get it into manageable pieces to put on top.
    3. Drizzle with a nice amount of olive oil and then top with some cracked pepper.
    4. Voila! Enjoy!
Watermelon Agua Fresca
Free of the top 8
  • 6 cups cubed watermelon
  • handful mint sprigs
  • club soda
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced
DIRECTIONS
    1. Put the watermelon in a blender and puree until smooth. Pour through cheese cloth and strain out the solids, squeezing the liquid into a large bowl or pitcher (you want to keep the liquid by the way, so squeeze it over a big bowl/pot/pitcher-not your sink!).
    2. Pour a glass half full with the watermelon water and then finish with an equal amount of club soda.
    3. Add a few slices of lime, few slices orange and a sprig of mint. Stir and enjoy!

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