Waste Not: Horchata de Melón

The simplest of things are the ones I most enjoy. Lately it has been glasses full of this drink, made with the pulpy mass of melon seeds which would normally end up tossed into a garbage can.

The cuisines of the world are full of dishes made with someone else’s garbage. Offal is what most easily comes to mind, but it doesn’t have to be anything as (for some) gag inducing.

In this agua fresca, the melon seeds bring a nutty aftertaste to the sweetness of the melon pulp which surround them. A few scraps of melon thrown in won’t hurt.

When cutting the melon, it is best to trim both ends, making a flat surface on which to stand it. With a serrated knife, follow the curve of the fruit, peeling away the skin. Cut the melon in half, scooping out the seeds and any juice into a container. Cut each half of the melon into half again, trimming away the points at each end so the melon quarter may lay flat when turned over, for easier cutting. Cut as desired.

Horchata de Melón

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • Seeds and pulp from 1 ripe melon, plus any scraps
  • 1 or 2 tablespoons granulated sugar or honey, or to taste
  • Juice from 2 limes, approx. 1/3 cup
  • 2 cups cold water

Place the melon seeds, sugar or honey, and lime juice in a blender jar. Blend on high for several minutes until as smooth as possible. Straining is not necessary, but the drink will have some grit. If a less gritty consistency is desired, pass through a metal mesh strainer, pushing through with the back of a spoon.

Add one quart cold water, and check for sweetness, adjusting as desired. Serve over plenty of ice and enjoy promptly.

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