By Ippolita Douglas Scotti:
In the heat of summer, I always like to make one my favorite dishes.
Watermelon is the symbol of summer in Italy, and its colors look like our flag. You can serve this refreshing dessert for a buffet in the garden to surprise your guests with something original, fruity, and with a kick of vodka flavor!
Watermelon is also good for your health (maybe not the vodka version!). It has diuretic properties, is a low-calorie fruit, and has vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals.
You need to choose the best, sweet, ripe watermelon to make the most of this recipe, so here some tips on choosing the best one:
Big or small, the watermelon should feel heavy for its size.
Look for the yellow spot: watermelons develop a splotch where they rest on the ground. When this splotch is creamy yellow, it’s ripe.
Give it a thump: tap the underbelly of the watermelon. A ripe one will have a deep, hollow sound, which means it is brimming with juice and at the peak of its ripeness. Under-ripe or over-ripe melons will sound dull.
And now you are ready for this summer recipe!
Iced Watermelon with Chocolate Chips
1 medium ripe watermelon
1/2 cup fine-quality bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons Vodka
Cut the watermelon in half and scoop out the pulp. Remove the seeds, but don’t throw away the external green skin because you’ll fill it with your sorbet.
Freeze the watermelon skin.
Place the pulp in the blender and mix with vodka. Add chocolate chips and lime juice.
Place in a freezer-safe container to freeze for 3 hours.
Once frozen, scrape out the sorbet, working quickly to fill the frozen watermelon peel, smoothing it with a rubber spatula.
Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until very firm (about 6 hours) and then serve.
Contessa Ippolita Douglas Scotti di Vigileno is a true Italian—born in Florence, Italy, from a long line of eccentric Italian aristocrats, she has traveled the world in search of adventure, romance, and magical, mouth-watering recipes. "Ippo" loves Italian history, especially as it relates to food. Author of There's a Beatle in My Soup, Curcuma e Zenzero (Ginger & Tumeric), 101 Perche Sulla Storia di Firenze (101 questions on Florence History), and Superfoods, Ippo is currently finishing her latest work, The Lords of Florence (all published by Newton Compton Publishers).