Watermelon sunrise

Watermelon sunrise

By
From
The Hang Fire Cookbook
Serves
1

Watermelon is a staple of the American Deep South. It is healthy, flavoursome and tastes delicious in both sweet and savoury settings. The sweetness of the lime and vanilla oleo complements the smokiness of the mezcal and allows the watermelon to shine. Oleo-saccharum involves extracting the zesty oils from citrus peel and was commonly used in 19th-century bartending to add citrusy flavour and aroma to drinks. Substitute any citrus fruit to the same effect.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient

For the lime and vanilla oleo-saccharum (makes 150ml)

Quantity Ingredient
5 limes
1 vanilla pod, split in half lengthways
150g white sugar

For each cocktail

Quantity Ingredient
smoked salt, for the rims of the glasses
lime wedges
ice cubes
75ml watermelon juice
50ml mezcal, (very smoky is best)
25ml lime juice
15ml lime and vanilla oleo-saccharum, (see above)
75ml fresh watermelon juice
watermelon wedges, to garnish

Method

  1. First prepare the oleo-saccharum. Use a vegetable peeler to pare the zest from the limes, leaving most of the white pith behind, and put the peels in a ziplock bag along with the vanilla pod and sugar. Set aside the zested limes for your cocktail. Seal the ziplock bag and use a rolling pin to bash the ingredients until the peels begin to release their oils. Leave to macerate for at least 30 minutes, or ideally a few hours. In this time, the sugar will extract the oils from the lime peel to make a fragrant liquid. Strain the peels in a sieve lined with muslin into a bowl. You have your oleo.
  2. This is a building cocktail, which means that you can make it all in one glass, leaving minimal mess.
  3. First, juice your reserved limes and strain using a tea strainer to get rid of all the pips. Sprinkle smoked salt on a saucer and run a lime wedge around the rim of a highball glass before dipping into the salt. Add three ice cubes. Add your ingredients in the order given on the left and stir with a spoon. Garnish with watermelon wedges.

Punch bowl

  • If making a few cocktails, use a whole watermelon and hollow out the flesh for the juice, then save the husk to use as a punch bowl. Also, watermelon rinds can be pickled so as not to waste.
Tags:
barbecue
BBQ
Southern
America
Deep South
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