Here in the south, people have developed this rather bizarre habit of adding salt to watermelon. As a kid in Kentucky, I never could understand why the adults around me were putting salt on a fruit. I loathed watermelon until I spent a summer living in Maine. The family I was staying with offered me a slice of watermelon and I said, "No, thank you! I don't like it."

They asked, "Who doesn't like watermelon?

I said, "Me. I don't understand why anyone would ever put salt on a fruit."

To which they replied, "Who puts salt on watermelon?"  That notion seemed just as insane to them as it does me. So, they handed me a slice of watermelon (WITHOUT SALT!!) and it was amazing. Delicious. Sweet. And I have been a fan ever since.

This recipe, from my friend Merritt Bates-Thomas, celebrates all that natural sweetness!

Sahand Babali/Unsplash
Sahand Babali/Unsplash
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1 small seedless watermelon (cubed, blenderized and strained; 64 to 72 ounces)*

5 lemons (juiced and strained; 8 ounces)*

6 limes (juiced and strained, 4 ounces)*

8 ounce water

1/4 cup sugar


Cut watermelon in half and then cut the halves in half. Spoon out watermelon flesh from 1/4 of the watermelon and blenderize until it's liquid. Pour liquid into a pitcher through a strainer to strain out pulp. Reserve pulp. Repeat with the remaining watermelon quarters reserving pulp to blenderize with the last quarter of watermelon flesh. Pulp should be minimal and can be added to the pitcher with watermelon juice or eaten.


Add strained lemon and lime juice to watermelon juice. The purpose of straining the lemon and lime juice is to remove stray seeds. Pulp can be added to the liquid.  Add water and sugar to the liquid mixture and stir well.

Merritt makes a simple syrup with the water and sugar to dissolve the sugar before adding it to the fruit juice.

Merritt Bates-Thomas
Merritt Bates-Thomas

Serve chilled over ice.



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