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franklin county times

Taste of Franklin: Mad for melons

FRANKLIN LIVING JULY-AUGUST 2023

Recipes by Amy Dolan McCollumn

Photos by Lara Gunderman

August is Watermelon Festival time in Franklin County! As Russellville’s quintessential community event approaches, try a recipe that just might inspire a new love for the festival’s namesake fruit.

Watermelon Limeade

If you are not familiar with agave, it is found on the baking aisle with the sugar and artificial sweeteners.  If your watermelon is not very sweet, you might want to add more agave.

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 cups cubed watermelon
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 3 Tb. agave or more to taste
  • Mint and sliced limes, for garnishes

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
  2. Strain into a large pitcher filled with ice.
  3. Garnish with lime wedges and mint (optional).

Watermelon Rind Quiche

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 1/4 cups matchstick-size julienned watermelon rind – white part only, no green skin
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 8 oz. shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • Cherry tomatoes, if desired
  • Dash salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk eggs, teriyaki sauce and sour cream until evenly blended. 
  3. Stir in watermelon rind, chopped peppers and half of the cheese. You can also add sliced cherry tomatoes, if you desire.
  4. Coat a 9-inch pie plate with non-stick cooking spray.
  5. Pour mixture into pie plate and sprinkle with cheese and paprika.
  6. Bake 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool before cutting into six wedges. Serve warm or at room temperature. 

Watermelon All-Star Milkshake

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped, refrigerated watermelon; remove all seeds
  • 4 large scoops vanilla ice cream
  • 3 Tb. Watermelon Starburst gelatin granules (Jell-O)
  • Whipped cream

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a blender, add the watermelon first, then ice cream, then gelatin granules. 
  2. Blend well.  
  3. Top with whipped cream. 

Watermelon Rind Cake

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups grated watermelon rind
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 3 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup of chopped pecans 
  • Small watermelon wedges, for decoration
  • Cream Cheese Icing: 8 oz. cream cheese, 1/2 cup salted butter, 1 Tb. vanilla and 3 cups powdered sugar (recipe below)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Sift together dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Cut the red off the watermelon rind. Grate 2 cups of white watermelon rind. Some people prefer the green left on; that is your own preference. Make sure all red is cut off.
  4. Combine the grated rind with eggs and oil in a large bowl.
  5. Pour rind mixture into dry ingredients and combine well.  
  6. Add pecans. Stir well.  
  7. Divide into two 9-inch pans, greased and floured.
  8. Bake 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  9. Remove from oven. Let sit five minutes then remove from pans onto cooling racks. Let cool completely before icing.
  10. Make icing: Let cream cheese and butter come to room temperature. Mix together with vanilla until smooth. Mix in powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
  11. Frost the top of the first cake. Carefully place second cake on top of first. Ice top of second cake. Add small watermelon wedges as decoration, if using.

Watermelon Glazed Meatballs

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 Tb. vegetable oil
  • 24-36 frozen prepared meatballs
  • 1 cup prepared barbecue sauce
  • 1 cup watermelon puree

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. To make the watermelon puree, remove seeds from fresh watermelon and cut into large chunks. Place in a blender and process until smooth and well pureed.
  2. Heat the oil in a large heavy sauté pan over medium high heat or electric skillet set on 325 degrees.
  3. Sauté the meatballs until browned and hot. Reduce heat to low.
  4. Mix together the barbecue sauce and watermelon puree. Pour over the meatballs and simmer for a few minutes. 
  5. Serve hot.

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