Although most people reach for a piece of watermelon to cool off in the heat of summer, watermelon is extremely versatile. It can be eaten raw as a sweet dessert, or as in these examples, dressed with condiments, grilled, or sauteed for completely different flavors. You’ll be amazed at how black pepper and balsamic vinegar make watermelon come to life! And adding heat brings out the natural juices in this already sweet fruit, allowing them to caramelize. Nature’s sweetness at its finest! Although one watermelon goes very far, the second recipe helps you use the often thrown-away white rind. Try one of these savory recipes this weekend!

Recipe 1: Watermelon and Cucumber Salad with Balsamic Glaze

Ingredients:

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 large watermelon, cubed
3 cucumbers, sliced and seeded
fresh mint leaves, chopped
juice from 1 lemon or lime
freshly ground pepper, to taste

 

Directions:

Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring continually, until the mixture thickens. Set aside to cool.

Add the watermelon, cucumber and fresh mint to a bowl. Top with the fresh lemon or lime juice and the freshly ground pepper. Gently toss to combine.

Drizzle with balsamic glaze and serve!

 

Recipe 2: Grilled Watermelon

Ingredients:

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar

1/4 watermelon, sliced into 1″ thick wedges

2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground sea salt, to taste
freshly ground pepper, to taste
Directions:
Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring continually, until the mixture thickens. Set aside to cool.
Brush the watermelon wedges with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.
Place on a hot grill to sear, about 3 minutes on each side. Remove from the heat and drizzle with the balsamic glaze.

Recipe 3: Watermelon Rind Saute

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons sunflower oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 scallions, roughly chopped and separated
4 slices fresh ginger
rind from 1/2 large watermelon, green skin removed, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon mushroom seasoning
1 teaspoon sugar
Directions:
Heat a wok over high heat. Add the sunflower oil and the salt. When the oil is hot, add the whites of the scallions and the fresh ginger. Stir to combine.
When the mixture is fragrant, add the watermelon rind, the mushroom seasoning and the sugar. Mix well. Then cover the wok for 3-4 minutes to allow the rind to cook down and the flavors to mingle.
Add the scallion greens and mix again. Remove from the wok and serve!

Click below to watch Grand Master Lu prepare this special Summer treat!

TCM Tips:

Watermelon is more than the perfect Summer treat. It helps to energetically support the Heart, the organ “on call” in Summer.

Easy Substitutions:

If you don’t want to go through the “trouble” of making a balsamic glaze, simply drizzle cubed watermelon with a bit of balsamic vinegar and black pepper.

Want to make it extra fancy? Add 1 cup of cubed feta or some chopped strawberries.

 

Go Beyond!

Click here to read Minimalist Cooking for tips on how to cook a delicious and healthy meal with what you have available at home.

Learn more about the cooling properties of watermelon: Beat the Summer Heat with this Superfood

Five Elements, Food

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