WATERMELON CUPS (raw-vegan)
Watermelon is one of those fruits that I associate not only with spring and summer but the word refreshing. Watermelon is on the lists of fruit that can be served in a variety of ways. It can be in sweet or savory dishes, served warm, cold and even frozen. Now that watermelons are in season (oh yeah!) I have to always have one in my kitchen. I like to eat it plain, in salads, in smoothies and of course serve it to anyone that comes over. Since watermelon is a semi-firm fruit, you can shape it into different serving vessels like a WATERMELON CUP. Watermelon cups are small enough to serve as a two bite appetizer but big enough to make a huge impact at your meal or party. Once you have made your watermelon cups, let the creativity flow. You can stuff them with fruit medley (like shown above– yes- the recipe is listed below), stuff them with savory nut cheese and herbs or you can even fill with ice cream for a tasty dessert… the possibilities are endless! So when you are staring at that watermelon and letting the creativity flow, don’t forget about making watermelon cups to serve in.
A CHEF’S TIP: I prefer to use seedless watermelon for my watermelon cups, it gives a cleaner presentation and ease of eating. To pick a ripe watermelon, knock on the center of the watermelon, it should sound hollow. The skin should be smooth with no blemishes or soft spots and of course– ORGANIC.
TO MAKE A WATERMELON CUP: take a large organic watermelon and cut it lengthwise through the middle and lay the two pieces cut side up. At this flat cut area, now press the side of a metal ice cream scoop (the traditional half ball one with the release lever) into the red meat starting from the right and slowly make a complete scoop motion into the meat going down to the left and back up level. You will have half of a ball shaped piece of watermelon. Trim this half ball if needed to make an even round shape. Lay on its side and cut just enough of the bottom to allow it to stand flat center up. Use a melon baller tool and make a full scoop out of the center to make a “BOWL”. This bowl is where you will stuff other ingredients into. Continue to make more cups. TAKE YOUR TIME and observe the remaining watermelon meat and space– you will need to space your cuts slightly away from each other to achieve the desired shapes. As you get further into the watermelon, trim the rind off and remove the unused meat for another recipe. When you have made the desired amount of watermelon cups, stuff and serve. NOTE: You can do this up to 1 day ahead, just make your cups, set flat on a plate and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to stuff.
FRUIT MEDLEY STUFFED WATERMELON CUPS
MAKES 8 WATERMELON CUPS
8 watermelon cups
1 cup ripe organic watermelon, fine diced
1 cup ripe organic strawberries, fine diced
2 ripe organic oranges, fine diced
8 large fresh organic spearmint leaves, fine chiffonade [stack leaves on each other going the same way, roll tightly lengthwise and thin slice the roll width-wise to make fine thin ribbons]
extra mint vines for garnish
Mix the diced fruit and chiffonade mint together and let set for 10 minutes. Over-fill the bowl in the cups and place on your serving platter. Garnish with extra mint vines. ENJOY!!