This post is sponsored by HMC Farms and Watermelon Board.
Summer is one of the best times of the year for the produce department and for backyard gardeners! So many delicious fruits and vegetables are in season, just waiting for you to try them out in fun and tasty new recipes. We shared a few on Indy Style — here’s what we cooked up! Check them out and find your new favorite flavors of summer.
Celebrating National Watermelon Month
It’s National Watermelon Month, which should come as no surprise — after all, the July heat is the perfect time to enjoy a juicy watermelon! Did you know that a watermelon is 92 percent water? If you and your family are outside in the sun all day, a slice of watermelon is a great way to cool off and stay hydrated.
The pandemic may be keeping us from getting together with our friends and family, but a slice of watermelon can still bring us the happiness and carefree feeling that comes with this season. To us, watermelon is one of the flavors of summer. It tastes like sunshine, the outdoors, and relaxation. It’s afternoons at the pool and weekends on the trail.
It also happens to be one of the most affordable produce items when you consider just how many people a watermelon can feed!
So how do you pick the perfect watermelon? Here’s what to look for in that appetizing stack of them you’ll find at the grocery store:
- First, look for the creamy yellow spot near the stem. That means it’s ripe!
- Next, pick it up. It should feel heavy for its size. After all, it’s full of water.
- Look for any soft spots on the melon. It should be smooth and firm all the way around. If you don’t find any soft and squishy patches, you’ve found the right watermelon to bring home!
Watermelon carvings are a fun summer activity that turn a tasty treat into a work of art!
When carving a watermelon remember that a dry erase marker is your best friend. Trace a design on your watermelon just like you would a jack-o-lantern on a pumpkin.
Watermelon Tomato Jalapeno Salad
Watermelon and tomato are two of the classic flavors of summer. And as it turns out, they’re perfect for each other!
A trick you’ve likely seen used at fine dining establishments is stacking. We’re doing the same thing with our Watermelon Tomato Jalapeno Salad. Stacking your ingredients makes the salad look big, delicious, and professional. It’s an easy trick for making photogenic food that looks as good as it tastes!
- baby spring mix
- 12 slices vine ripe tomato
- 6 squares watermelon 1/2″ thick, 4×4 squares
- 1/3 cup queso fresco crumbled
- 1/3 cup sweet onion sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Jalapeños seeded and minced
- 3 tbsp green onion thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp cilantro chopped (for the anti-cilantro, parsley or basil will work just as well!)
- 1 tsp agave nectar
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 cup lime juice freshly squeezed
- 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Whisk together jalapenos, green onions, cilantro, agave nectar, garlic, lime juice. Slowly drizzle in olive oil, whisk until well blended. Season with salt and pepper.
- Cut Watermelon into squares (see video above for demonstration). Slice tomatoes.
- In a medium bowl, toss baby spring mix with vinaigrette & season with salt.
- For each serving, place one watermelon slice on a plate, place some dressed spring mix onto watermelon. Top with tomatoes, cheese & sweet onions. Drizzle additional dressing over each serving. Season with salt and pepper.
Produce Moms Tip: Did you know 100% of a watermelon is usable? Say goodbye to food waste! Learn more here.
We love bonfires here at TPM. Spending an evening sitting around a fire is one of our favorite ways to entertain our friends and family. And we’ve come up with the most refreshing s’mores recipe you’ll ever try. Check out this new take on one of the best flavors of summer: Watermelon S’mores!
- Chocolate Bar
- Graham Crackers
- Slice watermelon into squares
- Toast marshmallow.
- Build your s’more: Start with a graham cracker bottom, a piece or two of chocolate, a toasted marshmallow, a thin slice of watermelon, and one more graham cracker to top it off.
Plumsicles™: The Sweetest Flavors of Summer
Sweetness is one of the flavors of summer, and nothing comes close to Plumsicle™. We introduced our Indy Style friends to this new HMC Farms plum. We’re sure you’ll love it too.
Plumsicles™ are available from mid-June through mid-July, exclusively from HMC Farms. They are available in one-pound clamshells and two-pound stand-up bags.
Plums are a fruit you’ll be seeing a lot more of this season. They’re criminally underrated and finally beginning to get the attention they deserve! You can always count on the plum people, HMC Farms, for plum-perfect fruit! They are a family-run, eco-conscious operation from California. Learn more about HMC Farms plums here.
Introduce your family to their new favorite dessert: the Plumsicle™ Pie! A good fruit pie is one of the most treasured flavors of summer and this one is a must-try.
- ½ cup butter
- 3 TBS flour
- ½ cup brown sugar (not packed)
- ¼ cup white sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- ¾ tsp salt
- 10 – 12 Plumsicles (peeled and sliced)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer add in lemon juice, salt and cinnamon.
- Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with peeled and sliced Plumsicles, mounded slightly. Cover with a lattice work crust. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off.
- Bake in the preheated oven 35 to 45 minutes, until the crust is golden to medium brown and the liquid is bubbling. If the top of the pie is not sufficiently browned raise the oven temp to 425 degrees and bake for an additional 5-15 minutes.
Now that you’ve used the plums, what do you do with the skins? They don’t need to meet their end in the trash can. Instead, use the Plumsicle™ skins to make a superfood smoothie after your pie is in the oven. This is a great way to help reduce food waste in your kitchen. You can use this smoothie as a fun and unique cocktail mixer, too!
- All of the plumsicle skins/peels
- Honey Greek yogurt
- Oat milk
- Blend together ingredients and serve.
Plum and Blackberry Grain Salad
Plums and Plumsicles work great in salads too! Plum and Berry Grain Salad has everything you want in a salad. Lots of color, lots of texture, lots of nutrition, and lots of flavors.
- Mixed salad greens
- HMC Farms plums, sliced
- Goat cheese
- Salad dressing (recommended: red wine vinaigrette)
- Toss together salad greens and quinoa.
- Place plum slices, blackberries, and almonds onto salad base.
- Sprinkle with goat cheese and drizzle with salad dressing.
Embrace the flavors of summer with watermelons and Plumsicles™. Thanks for watching!
Have a favorite way to eat plums? Want to celebrate National Watermelon Month with us? Join our Facebook group and join in on all the delicious fun!