Saturday, September 1, 2012


Nothing, but nothing, says summer like watermelon. We tried, for several years straight, to grow them, but we just didn't quite get it. Farmer's market watermelons are the best. I remember, as mentioned in the "S" post of last month, that slices of watermelon as well as many flavors of Nehi soda pop were shoved in a cattle trough filled with ice at our Thompson family reunions when I was growing up. You have not lived if you have not had a watermelon spitting contest with a dozen giggling cousins on a hot summer afternoon.

"Gak! I swallowed it!"

"Hahahahaha! Now you'll have a watermelon vine growing out your ear!" (Pro tip. When you're 5, you'll believe this.)

So, with some interest, I noticed Jell-o jumped on the bandwagon and offered a watermelon-flavor. Yes, it's artificial flavor, but watermelon is found in so many different things, from flavored water to cereal to candy, they probably have it pretty close to right.

I made up the jello. It's a very light pink color, very close to a rosé wine in fact. This photo makes it darker than it was. It's pretty close to the color on the box.

And the taste, much as I like jello and variety, this isn't something I'm ever buying again. Some flavors can be reproduced artificially. I don't think watermelon, in this format, is one of them. There was a hint of the melon and that was all. I might as well have eaten a bowl of unflavored gelatin while eating a slice of the real thing. In fact, I've found a method to have my melon and not have 80% of it go to waste. I buy this size. 

This is three meal's worth. I don't cut it until I'm ready to dice a section into cubes. Once cut, I have to eat it within 1-2 days or it goes really soggy and gets heaved into the compost pile where the squirrels pick out the seeds. The real thing is better for me anyway so I'll be leaving the gelatinized watermelon behind from now on and buying the chunk. It's more expensive, to be sure, but real watermelon can't be beat on the last few hot days of summer.

Beverage:  Darjeeling tea


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