Between my birthday on July 3rd, followed immediately by Independence Day and a family reunion at the lake beginning, July 6th, I’m happy to report that I’ll be enjoying more than a week of non-stop, fun-in-the-sun festivities. No complaints about the 100-degree weather from me, this is my absolute favorite time of the year!
On the agenda: morning runs, paddle-boarding, wake boarding, jet-skiing, fishing, helping with some landscape work and then lounging around on the dock. All this is sure to make a person thirsty and hungry. I’ll be at once hydrating and enjoying a wholesome snack thanks to watermelon and my latest recipe, Watermelon, Tomato and Jicama Salad with Tajin Honey Dressing. Read on to get the all the deets, the full recipe and how you can incorporate watermelon into your casual summer entertaining.
Last year, I celebrated at the lake with a fancy, over-the-top, Pinterest perfect Chocolate Cherry Watermelon Cake , definitely worth the work . . .but maybe not for every birthday!
This year, I’m showboating less while still sailing right into flavor bay with my simple-to-make and suitable-to-share Watermelon, Tomato and Jicama Salad with Tajin Honey Dressing.
The speedy assembly and shareablilty of food is at the root of all food served at our family reunions. There are dozens of hungry brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews, nieces, aunts, uncles, moms and dads, in a constant elbow-poking queue for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.
This watermelon recipe whips up 10 minutes, with just a little chopping and flick of the whisk. Watermelon chopping tips I’ve shared in the past can shave a few minutes off the prep time.
I tell my kids that watermelon is a beverage they can chew, it’s true! Refreshing and hydrating in hot weather, this fruit boasts 92% water content, means that for every 16 ounces that eaten, it’s like drinking 14 ¾ ounces of water. This salad is loaded good things along with the watermelon, including juicy little tomatoes and jicama, a very mild root with lots of fiber. You’ll love the vinaigrette-style dressing, it’s limey and honey-sweetened to offset the little kick of ground chiles in Tajin Seasoning. The salty Tajin also really makes the watermelon sweetness something extra special, a few shakes of salt on my wedges was a little trick I learned from Grandma. This dressing would also be fantastic on dressed on a green salad, marinated with shrimp and fish for tacos, or drizzled on corn on the cobb and other grilled veggies!
This fruit salad will be a hit at your next family reunion, backyard cookout, pot luck or picnic. It’s colorful, it’s a healthy side to a burger or barbecue, it can be made a day ahead or assembled 10 minutes before your meal. An easy way to plate this dish for outdoor enjoyment is to scoop up in plastic or paper cups – plush, no wash!
Because, I’m such a crazy watermelon lover, we’ll also be playing games with the watermelons purchase for the remainder of the reunion (we’ll go through one a day, at least!). Here are some games I’ve got lined up for the kids, young and old alike!
Hot Watermelon: Put on some patriotic music, have everyone sit in a circle and pass that watermelon around “hot potato” style. When the music cuts off, the person left holding the watermelon is out and the game continues on in the same fashion until there is one remaining winner!
Advanced Greased Watermelon Football: Rub a watermelon with petroleum jelly (Vaseline) and toss it in the pool. Divide guests up into two teams, one on each side of the pool or lake area. Give each team 1 pool ring for each person on their team, Team members will have to protect their ring without holding or stepping on them (or work as a group to protect them together). One a ring is stolen by the other team, the person who “owned” that ring is out. All the while this is happening, team members are working together to retrieve the greased watermelon and bring to dry land – it’s a slippery, strategic and super funny game.
Seed-spitting contests: See who can spit their seed out the farthest in this old-timey summer contest. Add even more challenge by setting out a few hula hoops and requiring the seeds to land in the middle before moving on!
Balance Challenge: Lots of variations in this face-off that requires participants to hold a watermelon in a certain way (overhead, on one leg, in a headstand, etc.) until they can’t maintain the posture anymore. Last person standing, the winner! Extra fun if you do it on a paddle board!
Don’t miss this juicy twitter party on July 6th! See you there!
What are you doing for the 4th of July? What is your favorite watermelon tip or recipe with watermelon? Care to guess how many watermelons I’ve already purchased this season? Let’s chat in the comments – XOXO, Jennifer
The post is sponsored by the National Watermelon Promotion Board. However, the opinions, and content (unless otherwise noted) and enthusiasm shared are my own.