Thursday, September 25, 2014

Ginger Watermelon Sangria with Basil

Watermelon. Juicy watermelon. The quintessental healthy summer treat. I feel like as a champion for health I should love watermelon... but... I don't. I just don't. I'm sorry! But you know what is delicious? Watermelon juice. 

I know what you are thinking. Watermelons are basically all juice, so how could I not like watermelon but like watermelon juice? 

Well, funny thing - it could be because watermelon juice makes an excellent mixer. Like... for... alcoholic drinks. Instantly making me like watermelon juice. Also, by nature it then makes the alcoholic drink healthy, right?

YES. Also, watermelon juice makes the most amazing sangria when mixed with rosé, ginger, and basil. So delicious. And yes, I know fall is pretty much here, but it's still one hundred and fifty degrees where I live and summer is glorious (despite the plant killing, death inducing heat in this town) so why not enjoy the last of summer sipping on this refreshing cocktail!

To make this recipe I teamed up with Williams-Sonoma, which by the way is like being a kid in a candy store when you go into that place. It's amazing. I want everything. I've particularly had my eye on the many juicers they carry, not just for the purposes of making delicious elixirs for sangria, but also to juice some green stuff to make up for all the delicious sangria I may consume. :)

Ginger Watermelon Sangria with Basil 

Makes 8-10 drinks

1 bottle of dry rosé
1 1/4 cup watermelon juice (about half a small watermelon)
1 cup chopped watermelon cubes
1 cup soda water
2 ounces (2 shots) triple sec
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
12 basil leaves

Start by juicing the watermelon. I used a watermelon with seeds and cut around the seeds. I cube the watermelon and add it to my ninja blender. Any blender should work fine though, watermelon is pretty soft. Just don't blend the seeds I find that a seedless watermelon means you have to blend the little white seeds and I don't like that. 

Blend half of one watermelon in your blender. Run the juice through either a juice / nut milk bag, cheese cloth, or fine mesh sieve to get rid of some of the pulp. Measure out 1 1/4 cups watermelon juice and save the rest for later... maybe a spin on these vodka cocktails?

In a large pitcher combine the bottle of rosé (I used Whole Foods brand), 1 1/4 cup watermelon juice, 1 cup soda water, 2 ounces triple sec, 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger. Taste - add more ginger if desired. 

Chop half the basil leaves and add to the mixture. Add watermelon cubes and stir. Refrigerate and serve chilled. 

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