Thursday, September 5, 2013


Melancia is Portuguese for watermelon. Agua fresca is Mexican. Cachaca is Brazilian, where they speak Portuguese more than Portugal. Why does any of this matter? Cocktails, duh.

First of all agua fresca is delicious and refreshing if you did not know. Its basically lemonade using other fruits. Water, fruit, sweetener, citrus, sometimes herbs. Its less sweet and more refreshing than plain old juice and it stretches your produce into more drinks. When made out of cucmbers and mint and lemon I've heard it called cucumber water. However, watermelon water sounds stupid. Watermelon agua fresca sounds delightful though. I made it like this:

Watermelon Agua Fresca

10lb watermelon, rind cut off, chopped coarsely to fit in a blender
4 C water
1 lime
6 Tbl Agave nectar

This is a monster batch. My watermelon didnt even seem that huge to me but when I weighed it the scale said ten pounds. It filled the blender 4 times! I did a quarter of the water melon, 1/4 lime, 1 1/2 tsp agave for each batch. My watermelon wasn't amazing and this was a great use for it but if I had an amazing watermelon it would be even better and maybe not need quite as much sweetener. I strained it through a mesh strainer and then washed away the foamy pulpy stuff. I filled 4 quart jars when I was done. When it sat in the fridge for a day, it separates into fine fruit pulpy solids and more clear liquid but a quick shake and its back to normal. Now what? Drink it as is, or over ice with mint leaves and lime slices added top the glass or make a cocktail:

Melancia Sour

recipe adapted from Kevin Deidrich of the Burritt Room, SF; via the internet.

1 1/2 oz Cachaca
1/2 oz lemoncello
1/2 oz lime juice
1 1/2 oz watermelon agua fresca

Stir with ice, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.

I adapted the recipe only because I didn't have the necessary ingredients for the original but I thought my version was really tasty. Cachaca is like the funky Brazilian cousin to rum. It is made from cane syrup rather than molasses and it is aged in wooden barrels for a year or more. It's pretty interesting if you can find it. If I didn't have Cachaca but I did have Smith & Cross Rum, I'd probably make it with that and be intoxicated more quickly but the flavor profile would be similar.

No comments:

Post a Comment