Today, my friends, is National Watermelon Day! And in celebration, here follows, from the Our Lady of Weight Loss Kitchens, some shocking (yes SHOCKING!) news about the watermelon, followed by some of my favorite Righteous Recipes!
What is watermelon?
Shocking Food News from the Our Lady of Weight Loss Kitchens – The watermelon is neither a fruit nor a melon.
Watermelon’s official name is Citrullus lanatu, and it is a member of the botanical family Curcurbitacae; and it is a vegetable. (Go know! I never would have guessed.) It is related to the cucumbers, pumpkins and squash families. Watermelons are native to the Kalahari desert of southern Africa and were introduced to America by Africans transported as slaves.
Fresh watermelons may be eaten just as they are, used to flavor summer drinks, or in a variety of recipes.
The watermelon’s exterior rind is smooth and its interior fruit is red, deliciously sweet and very juicy, and its colors and pattern are worth noting for any art project! Very inspirational.
What is a hard watermelon?
A hard watermelon is a watermelon that has had a hole pierced into it and hard liquor poured through that hole. The alcohol mixes with the juicy red fruit. You can then cut yourself a slice as you normally would. For adults only, of course, and in moderation!
Is Watermelon a healthy choice? You bet cha!
Congrats to the Watermelon for receiving the “heart healthy” seal of approval from the American Heart Association and for being the leader in lycopene among fruits and vegetables. Lycopene is known to reduce the risk of prostate cancer.
Watermelon is also loaded with Vitamins A, B6 and C, is low in sodium, fat-free, low in calories and is 92% water! A 2-cup serving of watermelon is only 80 calories. That’s twice as much bang for your buck as most fruit!
What are the benefits of Vitamins A, B6 and C?
The vitamin A found in watermelon can help to prevent night blindness and it gives a boost to the infection-fighting white blood cells called lymphocytes.
The vitamin B6 that used by the body to produce neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, melatonin and dopamine, which we all know by know make us feel good, help to alleviate anxiety and panic.
And the Vitamin C can boost the immune system’s resistance against infections and viruses. Once again, those free radicals chances of aging us or creating cataracts are diminished.
Tasty Tidbit ~ How to Pick A Watermelon:
Ingredients: 8 cups cubed seeded watermelon * ½ cup finely chopped onion * ½ cup finely chopped green pepper * 2 teaspoons fresh (if at all possible) basil * ½ teaspoon salt * 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper * 1/2 teaspoon chili powder * 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
In blender, puree watermelon with 1/4 cup of onion and pepper; pour into large mixing bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients (the other 1/3 cup of onion and pepper. Refrigerate, covered, at least 1 hour to blend flavors.
Makes 4-6 servings.
Watermelon Compote a la Our Lady & The Angel
3 cups Watermelon cubes, balls or chunks (whatever bite size you like best) * 2 cups cubed Pineapple (fresh, of course!) * 3/4 cup green grapes, seeded * 3/4 cup red grapes, seeded * 1/4 cup Creme de cassis (black currant liqueur)
Instructions: Combine fruit in a bowl. * Gently add and toss liqueur. * Cover, chill.
Still hungry? Fill up on healthy!
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