Watermelon: A Fruit Fit For A King

My love affair with watermelon goes way back. Yes, I was that little girl who methodically picked through the candy bin and removed each and every piece of watermelon Jolly Rancher until there were none left. On hot and humid summer evenings, Mom would send us kids out back with a giant bowl of watermelon slices to devour. Of course by the time I reached college, I was a watermelon connoisseur and preferred mine, um, spiked.

These days, I have a new-found appreciation for sweet, juicy watermelon when I discovered it's packed with some of the most important antioxidants in nature – vitamins A, C, and B6. And get this: watermelon contains more lycopene than any other fresh fruit or vegetable, even tomatoes.

With more than 1,200 varieties, what's not to love! This is fruit fit for a king – in fact, watermelon seeds were recovered from the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun. When I was traveling in Egypt, cafes often paired the sweet taste of watermelon with the salty taste of feta cheese.

Here's a couple of ways I've been enjoying this delectable thirst-quencher lately:
Watermelon Kiwi Cooler
(you may recall my love of the little hairy brown fruit)

3 cups seedless watermelon chunks

2 kiwi
3 strawberries

Juice of 1/2 lime

Blend ingredients together and serve chilled.

Watermelon Sorbet

Using a melon scoop, place several scoops of watermelon into a ceramic bowl. Place the bowl in the freezer for 30 minutes. Serve with chilled blueberries and a sprig of fresh mint as garnish.

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