Spitting and Fuming

Watermelon Ice with Seeds

Watermelon Ice with Seeds

A  couple of nights ago I met up with a couple of friends at an outdoor cafe. I had the grilled salmon: Salmony, but still rather good. But that’s not why you called. At some point the conversation turned to modern technology. In my own defense: I am not a technophobe. After all, I built this blog with my own two mitts, I own a rather technically advanced cell phone, and I set up my own Wi-Fi network at the Butter Flour Eggs World Headquarters. Yet, during this conversation, something snapped. Let’s just say that my inner Andy Rooney came frothing forth like a certain real housewife ready to tip over a table.

“It isn’t the technology,” I fumed, “It’s the way people use it. If one more person walks into me from behind without even the courtesy of an “Excuse me” because they have their head buried in their BlackBerry, I’m going to knock the thing out of their hands and throw it under the wheels of the next available taxi.”

To which one of my friends sniffed, “I’ll tell you what it is: it’s bad breeding.”

Yikes! I can just imagine what people eavesdropping on our conversation must have thought of us. But it was with that mindset that I went to the market to buy Watermelon for this week’s blog and was greeted by seedless Watermelon.

No, seedless Watermelon isn’t new to me; it has been out there for a few years. But in my cranky mood (and yes, clearly someone needed a nap) I looked at it and was somewhat offended by its seeming lack of modesty about its aesthetic incompleteness. It sat on its bed of ice, smiling at me with a big, pink, toothless grin.

The great masters have included Watermelon in their still life repertoire down through the ages, the ripe fuchsia melon always proudly speckled with little black seeds. Then we come along and change the game. What’s next: a horseless Merry-Go-Round? Barber poles without stripes? Ocean liners without smokestacks? (Okay, just how old am I?)

Of course, I like and embrace the purpose behind seedless technology: no spitting. It’s the visual that just doesn’t work for me.

I mentioned in my blog last week that I recently added an ice cream maker to my kitchen tool belt. Someone please knock the thing out of my hands and throw it under the wheels of the next available taxi. It is addictive. In an effort to stay on the healthy side of the (diet) law I am going to try and confine myself to sorbets, although you should not be surprised if a Creamsicle recipe shows up here before Labor Day.

That’s why I was shopping for Watermelon. I was craving Watermelon Ice. I doubt you’ll find a better remedy for a burning hot summer day. The seedless Watermelon reminded me though, that Watermelon Ice suffers from the same aesthetic deficiency as seedless Watermelon: no seeds. And without seeds it’s just sweet pink ice…yet you can’t really have seeds in Watermelon Ice. Can you?

What to do?

Whenever I am faced with a problem like this I usually assume that the answer is to add chocolate. This time was no exception — news that should make my Sister-In-Law very happy. If the Watermelon has no seeds, then I’ll add my own, in the guise of very edible, very unspit-able, chocolate chips.

Do I hear the sharp intake of breath that signals your collective skepticism at the combination of chocolate and Watermelon? Fear not. Unconventional, yes; unpalatable, a resounding no. Don’t forget: chocolate runs hot, cold, and frozen. The sharp crunch of the frozen chocolate chips masquerading as Watermelon seeds is a happy addition to the icy, delicately sweetened Watermelon, especially since the deep freeze mutes the chocolate, rendering it one half of a very happy buddy system of flavors. Make no mistake: this is not frozen water with a hint of Watermelon flavor. This is unmistakably Watermelon with a capital “W”, cold and as summery as a picnic table with a plastic gingham tablecloth.

The ice itself is fairly simple to make, if perhaps a bit time consuming. Chop the melon, strain the juice, add a touch of sugar and the Ice Cream freezer does the rest. Yes, you can make this without an Ice Cream freezer, but if you choose to do so be prepared for a slightly harder, icier consistency. This is not necessarily a bad thing; the Ice Cream freezer makes a slightly suppler ice that is easier to scoop. And the bonus is that once you’ve mastered Watermelon ice you have a year-round trick up your sleeve: Honeydew Ice in the fall is a nice treat, perhaps with white chocolate chips playing the seeds.

Ahhhhh. All of the sudden, I’m not so cranky anymore.

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Click here for the recipe for Watermelon Ice.

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