Cocktail: Watermelon Mojito

I'm holding on the fleeting end of summer with both hands right about now. While everyone else is dreaming of sweater weather and muled cider, I'm over here buying up all the summer flowers and product I can find. It's been a busy summer (as you probably have realized by my lack of blogging) filled with road trips and beach days and a lot of rosé sipping. And as much as I can live without the horrible humidity we've had this summer in Philadelphia, I'm my happiest when it's warm and sunny. 

So in celebration of summer were whipping up the perfect summer cocktail: Watermelon Mojito. Muddled mint, fresh-squeezed lime juice and pureed watermelon shaken together with rum and a lot of ice. Essential for lazy summer days. 

Watermelon Mojito

Makes 1 cocktail

1 large handful fresh mint
1 oz lime juice
4 oz watermelon puree**
2 oz white rum
ice
lime wheel and sprig of mint for garnish (optional)

In a cocktail shaker, add large handful of fresh mint and muddle. Add in ice, lime juice, watermelon puree, and rum and shake thoroughly. Strain the cocktail over a tall glass filled with ice. Garnish with a lime wheel and a sprigs of mint. Cheers!

**To make watermelon puree, place pieces of watermelon into a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and no larger pieces appear. At this point you can strain your watermelon puree if you prefer, but I never do. Store in the refrigerator. 

Recipe: Watermelon Pizzas

Do people still bring fruit salads to backyard bbqs?

When I think about it, I was a child the last time I ate a homemade, melon-ball-filled fruit salad made by someone's aunt. Maybe I just don't go to enough good bbqs and I should reevaluate the people I know. Maybe the fruit salad has been replaced with the fruit tray, which is great but always includes that dip in the center that I can't resist. And store-bought fruit salads are 90% giant melon chunks, which really breaks the "everything should be the same size" rule and is a complete disappointment to me since I don't like cantaloupe or honeydew. Don't people own melon ballers anymore?

Since we're on the topic of fruit salads, that's basically what these Watermelon Pizzas are. It's definitely not necessary to cover a watermelon slice with a fruit salad so it looks like a pizza. These probably also wouldn't be great for a large bbq as they are a little time consuming to decorate. But if you want a fun way to eat some fruit, throw it on a watermelon slice to look like a pizza and feed a few friends. It's for the sake of fun. And healthier than dipping strawberries into that fruit dip!

These pizzas can be made with whatever fruit combination you can think of. Below I made one with peaches, blueberries, and basil (which also has kiwis in the picture, could have done without honestly) and one with strawberries, blueberries, and kiwis. They both include goat cheese, but if you could try feta instead! Want to make these vegan? Switch out cheese for coconut flakes. Don't like balsamic vinegar? Leave it off! Have a bunch of mint growing in the garden? Switch out the basil of that! Possibilities are really up to you. 

The only thing to note: For presentation purposes, you'll want to slice your fruit a little on the thicker side. Really thin slices of the kiwi and peaches started to become transparent on top of the moist watermelon. But, still tasted good!

Peach, Blueberry, and Basil Watermelon Pizza

Yields 6 slices per pizza

1 1-inch slice of watermelon
1 ounce goat cheese
handful of blueberries
1/4 of a peach, sliced
3 basil leaves
balsamic vinegar 

Cut slice of water into 6 equal pieces. Add fruit so that each slices has a little bit of everything. Sprinkle with goat cheese. On a cutting board, roll the basil leaves into a little tube and slice into strips. Sprinkle on pizza. Finish with a little balsamic vinegar. Serve and eat immediately.

Berry and Kiwi Watermelon Pizza

Yields 6 slices per pizza

1 1-inch watermelon slice
1 ounce goat cheese
handful of blueberries
3-4 strawberries, sliced
half kiwi, sliced
balsamic vinegar 

Cut slice of water into 6 equal pieces. Add fruit so that each slices has a little bit of everything. Sprinkle with goat cheese. Finish with a little balsamic vinegar. Serve and eat immediately.