One of my favorite things about summer produce is the watermelon salad my mother always makes as the weather gets hotter. Taking cubed watermelon, she adds basil, jalepeños and black sesame seeds for a perfect side salad in the sweltering Texas sun. Going on common sense, it’s a little hard to add tequila to a salad; thus, I give you: Watermelon Jalepeño Mint Lemonade.
This is the kind of drink that is a perfect poolside accompaniment to light appetizers and snacks like taquitos, chips, guacamole, and salsa. I just created a jalepeño mint syrup and then added watermelon puree to lemon juice and water. It was really that simple and took practically no time. Enjoy.
- 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (6-10 lemons depending on size)
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup sugar
- 2.5 cups liquified watermelon pieces, in blender.
- 1 jalepeño sliced (seeds or not, depending on heat preference)
- 6 chopped leaves of mint + 6 for garnish.
- Tequila (optional)
- Add one cup of water to a sauce pan. Add sliced jalepeno and chopped mint. Bring to a boil.
- After boiling for about 2 minutes, add one cup of sugar until entirely dissolved. Let simmer for 5 more minutes then let cool for another 5.
- Using a pitcher and a fine strainer, strain the lemon juice, 3 cups of water, 2.5 cups of watermelon juice, and the simple syrup into the pitcher. Mix well and chill. Serve over ice.
- Do what you will with the tequila, I won’t judge.
Memorial Day has absolutely nothing to do with food. Anyone claiming otherwise is sadly misinformed. The last Monday in May has everything to do with honoring the heroic men and women that have valiantly served and defended our country. That being said, a man’s got to eat. So on this day of giving thanks for our servicemen and servicewomen made the most American thing possible – burgers – and then shoved a healthy dose of more America inside – Macaroni and Cheese. Yes, I know Mac and Cheese is technically British but a. America does it better and b. if you disagree, feel free to email me your location and we can set up a physical altercation.
Keeping in step with the American theme, I decided to make my sauce pan a “Great Melting Pot”. Cheese from Ireland, England, and Norway all graced my pasta sauce. Yes, I realize this would only count as cultural diversity if we lived in the 18th century and I promise next time to add cotija, shanklish, and paneer for the more socially progressive palate.
As for the burgers themselves I committed a cardinal sin. While fattier sausage increases the taste of beef patty burgers, adding it to bison ruined what would have been a perfect flavor. The next time I make this dish I would either subtract the sausage or replace the bison with beef.
There were certainly a few things I learned in the process of making these sliders. The first is that when you make homemade mac’n’cheese you must let the sauce simmer for at least fifteen minutes for it to be thick enough. The other thing I learned was that stuffing burgers is easy and any product created for such purpose is pointless.
Macaroni and Cheese
- 8 ounces elbow macaroni or whatever small macaroni, I don’t care
- 1 cup red leicester
- 1 cup cheddar
- .5 cup gjetost
- 3 cups milk
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2.5 tbsp flour
- Dinner rolls
- 1 egg
- 1 lb group bison
- .5 lb italian sausage
- Follow the box directions on your macaroni and cook it until just before al dente
- Drain the pasta and set aside
- Over medium heat in a sauce pan, melt 1/4 cup of butter.
- Slowly add the flour and mix to create a roux.
- Next add the milk
- Throw all the cheese in
- Stir on low heat until the cheese has melted. Keep occasionally stirring for another 15 minutes to thicken the sauce.
- Add in the macaroni and stir thoroughly.
- Take the sauce pan off the heat.
- In a mixing bowl combine the cracked egg and meats. Do not compress to hard.
- Using a little more than half the meat, create small patties with indentations in them, you should have 7 or 8.
- Spoon some of the mac’n’cheese into each indentation
- With the remaining meat, flatten out into thin patties to put over the base burgers. Crimp around the edges
- Throw these monstrosities on a medium high grill until cooked through.
- Serve on dinner rolls. If you need condiments, you probably don’t have taste buds.