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Neighbors of Kane County

Fresh Way to Fiesta

Apr 27, 2015 03:33AM ● By Family Features
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(Family Features) Cinco de Mayo is the perfect opportunity to indulge in Mexican-inspired dishes, dips and drinks. This year, put a tangy twist on your festive favorites with a refreshing new flavor.

Watermelon is a versatile fruit with a flavor profile that pairs perfectly with many of the ingredients in traditional Mexican dishes. Sweet and juicy watermelon is a great way to cut the heat of spicier foods, and its texture lends an unexpected, satisfying crunch in dips such as chunky salsas.

Whether you’re hosting a Cinco de Mayo themed party or simply looking forward to an inspired meal at home, get an early jump on summer and let watermelon be your star ingredient.

Fiesta-Worthy Facts
Impress guests at your Cinco de Mayo celebration with these mouthwatering morsels:

  • Although about 200–300 varieties of watermelon are grown in the United States and Mexico, there are about 50 varieties that are most popular.
  • The five best-known types of watermelon include: seeded, seedless, mini, yellow and orange.
  • Watermelon is the most-consumed melon in the United States, followed by cantaloupe and honeydew.
  • Early explorers used watermelons as canteens.
  • Watermelon is 92 percent water, which makes it a good option for hydrating your body.

For more recipes featuring low-calorie, no-fat watermelon, visit

Southwest Salsa Bowl


  • 1 round, seedless watermelon
  • Dry erase marker
  • Utility knife or carving knife
  • Ice cream scoop or other large spoon
  • Fire and Ice Salsa (see recipe below)
  • Chips, jalapenos, cilantro and lime, for garnish
Carving Watermelon
  • 1. Choose round seedless watermelon.
  • 2. Wash watermelon and pat dry.
  • 3. Use dry erase marker to trace design around middle of watermelon.
  • 4. Use utility knife to carve design (copy design in photo).
  • 5. Split watermelon in half, and use scoop to carve out flesh.
  • 6. Choose flat area of rind on other watermelon half to trace and carve out lizard design (copy from image in photo).
  • 7. Fill bowl with salsa.
  • 8. Garnish with lizard, chips, jalapenos, cilantro and lime.
Fire and Ice Salsa
  • Servings: 3 cups
  • 3 cups seeded and chopped watermelon
  • 1/2 cup green peppers
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon green onion
  • 1–2 tablespoons jalapeno peppers


  1. Combine ingredients; mix well and cover. Refrigerate 1 hour or more.

Watermelon Cilantro Salsa Tropical


  • 2 cups chopped seedless watermelon
  • 1 cup chopped fresh pineapple
  • 1 cup chopped fresh mango
  • 4 limes (juice only)
  • 1 cup trimmed and chopped scallions
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Toss all ingredients in mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper just before serving.

Watermelon Margarita


  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 3/4 ounce Triple Sec
  • 3/4 ounce Midori
  • 2 ounces sour mix
  • 6 ounces cubed, seeded watermelon
  • 8 ounces ice


  1. Blend all ingredients. Serve in 14-ounce glass. Garnish with lime and watermelon wedge.

Baja Fish Tacos with Watermelon Guacamole


  • 2 medium avocados, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons diced jalapeno pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can (4 ounces) diced green chilies, drained
  • 2 1/2 cups diced watermelon, divided
  • Salt, to taste
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 1/2 pounds cod
  • Chili powder
  • 12–16 corn tortillas
  • 3–4 cups commercial coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots)
  • 1/2–1 cup commercial salsa


  1. For guacamole, mash avocados to mix of smooth and chunky in medium bowl. Add lime, jalapeno, cilantro, garlic and chilies and mix thoroughly. Add 1 1/2 cups diced watermelon and salt (if desired) and toss. Cover and refrigerate to let flavors blend.
  2. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  3. Place cod on sheet and sprinkle with chili powder and salt. Bake for 12–20 minutes (depending on thickness of fish) or until cooked through. Remove from oven and cut into pieces.
  4. Heat tortillas on grill or griddle. Top each with few pieces of fish, 1/4 cup coleslaw mix, heaping spoonful of guacamole, tablespoon of salsa and few pieces of remaining diced watermelon.

Sponsored by National Watermelon Promotion Board