I absolutely love watermelon. Nothing marks the beginning of summer like cutting open a green and juicy melon and eating it, while the juice runs down your chin. But since it’s winter now, how about we learn some tricks and methods to freeze that sweet and watery fruit in order to avoid that three-month watermelon apocalypse.
Watermelon is a fruit and a vegetable!
Watermelon is related to pumpkin, cucumbers, and squash, that’s because it’s partly a fruit and partly a vegetable. Another clue? Watermelon’s rind is edible, and its seed produces an new plant.
Water-rich fruits like watermelon become an integral part of our lives during summer. But hey! What about winter cravings, when you feel like savoring its sweet juice. You can freeze any vegetable or fruit, this gives you the benefit of enjoying that particular fruit in any season.
Whether it is for smoothies, or making a puree for your baby, you can be prepared to serve this fruit in winter by freezing it.
You will just need few simple things which are probably stored somewhere in your kitchen, and you are all set to freeze those delicious watermelons. Because, let’s get real, you can’t store an entire watermelon in your freezer. Read this Tastessence article to find out four easy methods to freeze watermelon.
4 Ways to Freeze Watermelon
- Choose a watermelon which is not overly ripe or overly raw, also, when buying watermelon, don’t go for glossy ones, instead, go for the ones which look dull because they taste sweeter.
- Wash and pat dry the watermelon before cutting it, rinse the fruit with water for 20 seconds. Always, wet your hands with hot water and soap to prevent any transfer of germs from the fruit.
- Pat dry the fruit with clean paper towels or cloth. Cut the watermelon in half, first lengthwise then in quarters.
- Cut out the rind, you can keep it or throw it away. Also don’t forget to remove the seeds as this will be helpful while making a smoothie or puree for your baby.
- You can either cut into wedges, slices, balls, or cubes.
- Next, take a baking sheet and spread out all the pieces on that sheet, evenly, making sure they don’t touch each other.
- Keep the baking sheet with the fruit pieces in the freezer for a few hours. They would be hard to touch and frozen which means they are ready for further use. If you have difficulty removing frozen pieces from the sheet, use a spatula.
- Store the frozen pieces in an oversized plastic bag or a resealable plastic container, but make sure to leave at least ½ inch of head space in the container. This is required because the gap will allow the pieces to expand. Without the space, there are chances of the container breaking or opening up.
- Always select a plastic container, it must be resistant to both vapor and moisture, also, it should block any other odor or flavor. Glass containers should be avoided because they tend to break in extremely cool temperature.
- Don’t forget to label the container or packet with the current date.
- Follow the same method of washing and cutting the watermelon into pieces, wedges, balls, etc.
- Take 4 cups of water, and add 1¾ cup of white granulated sugar in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to boil over medium-high heat. Stir continuously until the sugar granules dissolve.
- Transfer the syrup in a container and place it in the refrigerator for almost an hour until it cools down. Hot syrup can cook the fruit, so it should be at room temperature before you add the pieces to it.
- Put ½ cup syrup in a plastic container, add the watermelon pieces, and fill it with the rest of the syrup to keep the watermelon completely submerged.
- Place a small piece of wax paper over the pieces and leave at least ½ inch gap in the container. Label it with the current date.
- Wash and dry the watermelon before cutting it. Make sure to remove the rind and seeds before cutting them into pieces.
- You can decide to scoop out the watermelon with an ice cream scooper, or simply cut it into small wedges.
- Transfer the pieces or balls of watermelon in a clean bowl, and add 1 lb or 2 cups of white granulated sugar. Mix thoroughly so that every piece is coated with sugar.
- Transfer the sugar-coated pieces in a container or plastic bag, but make sure to leave some air space in the container.
- Label the container, and you are good to go.
- Choose a watermelon which is not overly ripe or overly raw. Don’t purchase watermelon which are glossy, instead, buy ones which look dull as they are sweeter to taste.
- Wash and pat dry the fruit before cutting it. Rinse it with water for 20 seconds. Wash your hands with hot water and soap, to prevent any germs from transferring.
- Pat dry with clean paper towels or cloth. Cut the watermelon in half, first lengthwise then in quarters.
- Pack them in containers leaving ½ inch of air space at the top; also, label the container with the current date. This will give you an idea of how long the pieces were kept in the freezer.
- Next up, take any juice, preferably, orange juice, pineapple juice, or ginger ale, covering the watermelon pieces completely. Juices with high acid and sugar content are preferred.
- Place a sheet of wax paper over the pieces. Keep the pieces submerged in the juice.
- Watermelon can be stored up to 12 months provided the temperature is at -18°C.
Before using it in any dish or smoothies, make sure you keep them in the refrigerator for at least 2 days. You can’t expect the same freshness to exist even after months, it may become a bit loose, but you can always use them in salads or juices. Fully thawed watermelon is almost like puree. You can use this to make mocktails and cocktails.