Levi Roots is using his melon to show us just what you can do with the fruit that is made up of a thirst-quenching 92% water.
From making watermelon jelly to a savoury watermelon and halloumi wrap, Levi shows us how it’s the perfect way to cool you down on a hot summer’s day like today!
Halloumi wraps with watermelon and mint salsa
400g peeled watermelon, seeded
1 small red onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped mint leaves
½ scotch bonnet or other hot chilli, seeded and finely chopped
juice ½ lime
¼ tsp salt
2 a 250g halloumi cheese blocks
6 rotis or wraps
Prepare the salsa shortly before you cook the halloumi to keep it nice and fresh. Cut the cucumber in half lengthways and use a teaspoon to scoop out the seeds.
Cut the flesh into 1.5cm cubes. Cut the watermelon into similar-sized pieces. Mix the cucumber, watermelon and onion together in a bowl.
Cut the halloumi blocks in half horizontally and cut each piece into slices 2-3cm thick. Some people cook the halloumi directly on the barbecue but I prefer to place the slices on to a piece of foil first. Cook until slightly oozy, turning over once.
Put the wraps on a work surface and spoon a line of salad down the middle of each one, leaving any liquid in the bowl. Put a few slices of halloumi on top of the salsa and roll up the wraps. You can serve them cut on an angle if you like.
Watermelon fruit salad in rum punch syrup
For the syrup
150ml pineapple juice
200g caster sugar
2 strips of lime rind
juice of 2 limes
½ cinnamon stick
3cm piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and sliced
150ml white rum
800g melon flesh, seeded and cubed
Put the water, pineapple juice, sugar, lime rind, lime juice, cinnamon stick and ginger into a pan and bring to the boil, stirring a little to help the sugar dissolve. Turn the heat down and simmer for 15 minutes. You should end up with about 300ml syrup. Pull the pan off the heat and leave to cool completely and then strain. Add the rum.
Put the melon into a dish, pour over the syrup and chill for 20 minutes or so – you can put the cinnamon stick back in with the fruit if you want to but not the lime rind or the ginger. Its best not to leave the fruit for longer than 30 minutes or so before serving, as it gets too soft.
Watermelon, raspberry pineapple limeade
Makes 1.4 litres (2 ½ pints)
250g watermelon flesh
85g caster sugar, plus extra to taste (optional)
juice of 10 limes
250ml (9fl oz) pineapple juice
1 litre (1 ¾ pint) soda water, chilled
Ice cubes to serve
Put the watermelon, raspberries and 4 tbsp sugar in a bowl. Stir gently, cover and set aside for 1 hour.
Transfer the raspberries to a food processor, add the remaining sugar, and whizz to a puree. Push the mixture through a nylon sieve into a jug, then mix in the lime and pineapple juices, and soda water, and stir in the ice. Add more sugar if needed to taste.
Serve in chilled glasses or a hollowed watermelon if you like.
Watermelon and strawberry jelly
1 medium watermelon
3 x 135g raspberry or strawberry jelly cubes
450ml boiling water
450ml watermelon juice
Cut a medium watermelon in half, hollow out reserving the flesh.
Blitz the flesh in a food processor and pass through a fine sieve to extract the juice.
Place the jelly cubes into a bowl and pour on 45oml of boiling water and stir until the cubes have dissolved fully.
Measure out the watermelon juice – you will need 450ml, top up with cold water if necessary.
Stir the watermelon juice into the melted jelly mixture.
Sit the watermelon halves in a small bowl so it’s upright.
Pour the jelly mixture into the halves until they are full and level.
Place in the fridge to chill overnight or until set.
Carefully cut the watermelon jellies into wedges and serve.