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Video: Make refreshing soup, salad with watermelon

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    >> how to cook everything today. this morning creative and surprising ways to enjoy the summer classic watermelon . a friend of ours, "new york times" columnist and the author of eat vegans before 6:00. good morning. nice to see you.

    >> good morning, matt.

    >> we're using watermelon . how do you pick a good watermelon ?

    >> there is this thing, if it sounds hollow --

    >> don't shake them. nothing is going to happen. smelling them?

    >> no.

    >> you know what? bad water melons are hard to come by. you are usually in pretty good shape. i want to show you the advanced way of taking the flesh off this. sort of treating it like an orange. cut off both ends. then just cut around the rind. exactly. that is very nice.

    >> first recipe we'll use cubed watermelon combined with tomatoes, herbs, and you have a bacon vin egret. why do you like that combination?

    >> first of all bacon and tomatoes you can't go wrong but with the sweet watermelon and bacon vinagrette it is a real winner. the mozzarella would be great. then just some cooked bacon, a little shallot, olive oil , touch of vinegar.

    >> would you really put it on that hot?

    >> i would put it on that hot. i would have cooked the shallots a little longer.

    >> that is a great summer salad. again, would you use the watermelon at room temperature or cold for that?

    >> room temperature . cold is fine, too. it is a salad. it doesn't matter. this is great. also tomatoes and watermelon in a blender with, do you mind, some chili, some garlic. lemon juice .

    >> this is a soup.

    >> we're going to make a watermelon tomato gezpacho. all of the lemon juice . let's try it.

    >> very liquidy.

    >> okay.

    >> thank you.

    >> serving it with crab. why that combination?

    >> it is just really beautiful and it gives you something chewy and a little more substantial in there.

    >> top it off with a little cilantro. perfect. you can put a couple ice cubes in here too and it becomes a little slushier.

    >> next you'll make a grenita. technically what is that?

    >> an ice cube . you take watermelon puree like that and you freeze it and then either with -- you can try this. even with a spoon or with a fork you just scrape it up and you get shaved ice .

    >> is this only watermelon puree or something else in there?

    >> lemon and sugar.

    >> okay. how much sugar do you put in this?

    >> a little more than we did, actually.

    >> let me taste it.

    >> i'd put for two cups of watermelon i might put half a cup of sugar.

    >> it is good. there is something else in there. no herbs or anything? no parsley? a very sophisticated taste.

    >> you do.

    >> it might be left over from when, the little bacon over tlnchts maybe the stuff on your pants.

    >> exactly. how do you serve that? just put it like a snow cone ?

    >> i would put a teenie bit of mint in there.

    >> finally some lemonade. you take these watermelon ice cubes , pop them in there. another great combination.

    >> pureed watermelon in an ice

TODAY recipes
updated 7/11/2013 9:24:55 AM ET 2013-07-11T13:24:55

Recipe: Watermelon salad with bacon vinaigrette

Ingredients
  • 3 cups watermelon, cubed
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh mozzarella, cubed
  • 4 ounces bacon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, chopped
  • Splash, sherry vinegar
  • Black pepper
  • Basil (garnish)
Preparation

In a large bowl combine 3 cups cubed watermelon, 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped, and 1/3 cup cubed mozzarella. 

For the vinaigrette, render 4 ounces chopped bacon in olive oil until crisp. Add some chopped shallot, a splash of sherry vinegar, and lots of black pepper. Toss with the watermelon and tomatoes. Garnish with fresh basil.

Recipe: Spicy Thai watermelon soup with crab

Ingredients
  • 1 small watermelon (3 pounds)
  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 hot chili (like Thai or serrano), minced and seeded
  • Fish sauce (to taste)
  • Ice cubes
  • 1 cup lump crab meat
  • Cilantro (garnish)
Preparation

Peel 1 small watermelon (about 3 pounds) and cut the flesh into large chunks. Put them in a food processor along with 2 ripe tomatoes, chopped, 1 minced garlic clove, 2 tablespoons lime juice, salt and pepper and add minced fresh hot chili (like Thai or serrano), and fish sauce (both to taste). Pulse the mixture, adding a few ice cubes, one at a time, if necessary to get the machine going. Chill in the fridge.

After pouring the soup into bowls, top with a small mound of lump or jumbo lump crab meat. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

Recipe: Watermelon granita

Ingredients
  • 1 pound watermelon
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
Preparation

Cut about 1 pound watermelon into small chunks. Use the blender. Use 2 tablespoons lemon juice; blend until the mixture liquefies. Pour the mixture into a shallow glass or ceramic pan and freeze, for about 2 hours, breaking up the ice crystals with a fork every 30 minutes or so. It should be slushy and crunchy.

Recipe: Lemonade with watermelon ice cubes

Ingredients
  • 1/2 small watermelon (1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Lemonade
Preparation

Put 1 cup each water and sugar in a small saucepan over high heat. Boil until the sugar dissolves and cool.

Peel half a small watermelon (about 1 1/2 pounds) and cut the flesh into large chunks. Put them in a blender and purée until smooth. Pour the purée through a fine mesh strainer and discard the solids. Combine the juice with the chilled syrup. Pour the strained watermelon into an ice cube tray (plastic, not silicon), and freeze until solid.

Make lemonade (to your specifications), using the simple syrup to sweeten it, and adding vodka to make it boozy if you like. Serve in glasses over the watermelon ice cubes.

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