One of the most refreshing drinks you can enjoy only when the thermometer reaches temperature that required the most icy cold drink is watermelon juice. About a year ago, after cleaning out my last apartment and loading up my car in the Florida July heat, I discovered bottled watermelon juice. At first, I thought the idea of watermelon juice felt odd, but let me tell you - it is sweet, flavorful, and oh so refreshing on a hot day. It can be drank straight, diluted with sparkling water, or used for a summer themed cocktail. Recently we have gotten in the habit of packing a bottle or two in our cooler, so when we finish a hike, we have a refreshing drink waiting without the added sugar or artificial colors of sports drinks.
Refreshing Watermelon Lime Juice
Yield: Depends on size of watermelon
1 Seedless Watermelon (personal or full sized will work)
Pinch of Salt
Start by carefully washing your watermelon. The rind may still have a bit of dirt and was probably touched by a few sets of hands before getting to your kitchen. Be careful because they can be slippery and heavy. I like to wash one half at a time, and then dry with a kitchen towel.
Then with a sharp knife or cleaver, trim off the two poles, taking care to remove all of the rind. This will create a flat area to allow for easy and safe removal of the rest of the rind.
Set the watermelon up on one of the cut ends. Then with downward motion, remove the rest of the rind as you work your way around the watermelon.
If cutting a full-sized watermelon, it is helpful to cut it in half before trying to cube.
Then cube the watermelon into rough chunks that will be easy for the blender to process.
The rinds can be turned into pickles or composted. If you decide to eat some of the watermelon, you can make juice with as little as a blender full of cubes or the entire thing in batches.
Fill your blender jar with watermelon cubes before processing is on low. Seedless watermelons are not always 100% seedless, so you do not want to turn the seeds into a puree. The goal is blend it long enough to just barely break up the watermelon flesh so you can access the juice.
Using a fine mesh sieve (or a regular sieve or pasta strainer with a tea towel, cheese cloth, or old t-shirt), pour the juice into the straining device over a bowl or pot. I like this pot pictured above because it has a pour spout but any sort of large container will do. Depending on the size of your straining device, you may have to work in batches. Continue below -
I like to use a rubber spatula or the back of a wooden spoon to press the juice from the pulp. Once there is no juice left in the pulp discard the pulp and continue working to strain any remaining juice in batches.
For me, a personal sized watermelon typically renders about a quart of juice. For a full-sized watermelon, it takes me a few blender-fulls to process the watermelon. A full-size may render anywhere from 3 quarts to a gallon of juice depending on size.
Add a pinch of salt for ever quart of juice you have; this will not make it salty but bring out the sweetness. Then add the juice of one lime for every quart and taste. You may want more lime, if so add more.
Pour into airtight storage bottles or jars. Watermelon juice will store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for a few months.
Note - Shake Well! If you use a strainer without a tea towel or cheese cloth you may have micro-bits of watermelon flesh suspended in your juice. This as the tendency to separate while being stored. Don't worry, just give it a shake and pour to enjoy.