Watermelon, Wonderful in More Ways Than One: Real Healthy
National Watermelon Day is a month away (August 3rd), but I always think of the 4th of July as the beginning of watermelon season. What could be more more refreshing on a hot summer day? True to its name, watermelon is more than 90% water, so it’s a great way to rehydrate. And it’s no slouch in the vitamin department, either.
Watermelon is one of the richest sources of lycopene, a antioxidant from the carotenoid family that protects cells from free radical damage. Lycopene appears to have a particular affinity for the eyes, helping to prevent age-related vision loss. It’s also been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease and several cancers. Of course, it’s also fine to enjoy watermelon just for the pure juicy pleasure of it. (See recipes below for some fresh ideas.)
Storage and Preparation Tips: Watermelon is most refreshing served chilled, but research has found that storing whole watermelon at room temperature can increase the lycopene levels. If you’re keeping a melon for a few days, leave it at room temperature until you plan to serve it. Then, pop it in the fridge to chill thoroughly before carving. Be sure to wash the outside of the melon well and dry the rind with clean paper towels before slicing. That prevents any harmful bacteria on the surface from spreading to the fruit itself via the carving knife.
Grilling watermelon? While it might sounds strange, the results are crowd-pleasing and delicious. Feta cheese helps to create a tantalizing balance of flavor.
The savory taste of this classic chilled soup makes it hard to imagine ever wanting to make it any other way. The good news: You don’t have to.
There’s something about the tangy spark of goat cheese that makes mouth-watering magic when combined with the mellow taste of watermelon.
Talk about an odd couple! But only at first, because watermelon does something sweet and sexy to the hot jalapenos in this salsa.
Beat the heat with these other cool summer recipes!