Sweet Meets Spicy

27 Apr 2017
POSTED BY Y Magazine

There’s no better way to spice up a party than by using unexpected ingredients in fun, flavoursome dishes and drinks. For your next fiesta, celebrate a star of the party with sweet and juicy watermelon.

Not only does watermelon lend a unique taste to your menu, it’s also a healthy ingredient that provides natural hydration with 92 per cent water content, along with the antioxidant lycopene and the amino acid citrulline.

These recipes show how, with a little creative carving, you can use the whole melon, including flesh, juice and rind, for big value and zero waste.

Find more fiesta-ready recipes at watermelon.org.

– Family Features

Cactus Carving

  • Medium-large oval or oblong watermelon (seeded or seedless)
  • Cutting board
  • Paring knife
  • Dry erase marker
  • Kitchen knife
  • Scoop
  • Cactus cookie cutter
  • Small flower cookie cutters
  • Toothpicks
  • Fire and Ice Salsa (recipe below)

Wash the watermelon under cool, running water and pat dry.

On a cutting board, place the watermelon on its side and cut off about 0.5cm from the stem end. This will provide a sturdy base. Reserve the end piece to make into a small cactus.

Stand the watermelon upright on the base. Use the dry erase marker to draw a simple outline of a cactus shape.

One-third up from the bottom of a watermelon, draw a straight line around the back, taking care not to go through the cactus outline. This will create a serving bowl for watermelon salsa.

Use a kitchen knife to cut around the outline, leaving just the bowl with the cactus attached. Scoop out the base to form a bowl.

From pieces of watermelon that were cut away, use cookie cutters to make cactus pieces and flower pieces to decorate with, and chop the rest of the watermelon to make watermelon salsa and watermelon margaritas, or juice.

Attach toothpicks randomly around the cactus to make thorns and decorate with watermelon flowers. Decorate the bottom rind scrap with toothpicks to resemble a short, round cactus.

Fill a bowl with Fire and Ice Salsa and serve with tortilla chips.

Fire and Ice Salsa

Makes: 3 cups


  • 3 cups seeded and finely chopped watermelon
  • 1/2 cup finely diced green peppers
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon finely sliced green onion
  • 1-2 tablespoons finely diced jalapeno peppers


Combine ingredients; mix well and cover. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

Nachos with Watermelon Avocado Salsa

Makes: 8 servings


  • 1 avocado, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 can (113g) diced green chilies, drained
  • 2 tablespoons diced red onion
  • 1 1/2 cups diced watermelon
  • 450g  fat-free refried beans
  • 300g corn tortilla chips
  • 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/3cup fat-free sour cream


  • Heat oven to 190C .
  • To make the salsa: In a medium-sized bowl, combine the avocado, lime juice, cilantro, garlic, chilies and red onion and toss to thoroughly mix. Add watermelon and toss gently. Set aside.
  • Over a medium heat, heat the beans until hot. Mash if preferred.
  • Place the chips on a flat, oven-proof plate or baking tray and top with beans and cheese. Repeat layers as desired. Heat in the oven for 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the chips are hot.
  • Top with the salsa mixture and sour cream.

Tip: Reserve some salsa to place in a bowl for dipping.

Share this

Public Reviews and Comments