Picking the perfect watermelon can be a crapshoot. I've heard to look for bee stings, minimal yellowing, heavy ones, round ones....
I tend to give mine good slap and listen for a nice hollow sound. It is quite the scene to see me in the market slapping up all the melons. Well this last time, I hit a winner! It was so good I could hardly stop eating it while I was cutting it into big fat wedges.
Of course it is always a wonder what to do if you get a mediocre watermelon. You don't want to eat it, or pawn it off on your BBQ guests, but I think I have found the solution: WATERMELON GAZPACHO. Holy molars, this recipe is a dinger! The magic of watermelon marrying a salty and flavorful mess of a little spice, fresh herbs, garlic and veggies, wooo! If you're in to cold soups, this is perfect for appetizers for a BBQ or even lunch on a hot summer day. I like to sip mine in Moroccan tea glasses for an added touch of flair!
8 c. Coarsely chopped watermelon (which only is about 1/4 of a big ol' melon!)
1 Large tomato, diced
1/2 Cucumber, peeled and diced
1/2 Small purple onion, diced
1 Clove garlic, minced (I did two because I like to sweat garlic...and note, it gets garlicier the more it sits)
2 Tbs. Cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 c. Extra virgin olive oil
1/3 c. Tomato juice (like V8)
1/3 c. Water
1/4 c. Sherry Vinegar
2 Tbs Lemon juice (I used limes which worked just fine)
1/2 tsp. Cayenne (a little went a long way and had quite the kick!)
Salt to taste
Mix together in a food processor or use an immersion blender, careful not to splatter! The amount you blend will be determined by how fine you want your chunks. I like a bit to chew on so I just did a quick blend.
Chill before serving.
I recommend preparing this a day before you serve it as the flavors tend to come alive after marinating for a bit!
Num, Num, Num!
-Jessie, Santa Fe, NM