Aguas Frescas: Canteloupe Water

Cantaloupe water, just one wonderful choice in a menu of aguas frescas, is delicious.  It’s also easy and cheap to make.  For $2 you get a gallon of fruit juice like it should be.

Right now cantaloupes are at their most affordable price point of the year, so give it a go.

Just scoop out the seeds from a ripe cantaloupe.  Separately, puree the flesh of the cantaloupe in a blender and puree the scraped out seeds in a blender.  Pour the pureed flesh into a one gallon container.  Strain the pureed seeds through a sieve and add the part that comes through the sieve to the container (it thickens the juice).  Discard the seeds left in the sieve.  Add enough water to fill the one gallon container then add just enough sugar to balance the flavors – very little – the amount will depend on the variety and ripeness of the cantaloupe.  Stir and refrigerate.

When ready to serve, stir to blend and pour over ice or just chilled.    Great as is or use it to mix a new favorite cocktail.  It’s strangely delicious in its simplicity and very healthy…even more so with the fiber of the flesh and seeds in it.

And here’s a culinary tip I learned from Jose long ago:  cut the blossom and stem ends  off the cantaloupe so it can sit flat in an upright position on the cutting board, then peel the skin with a sharp knife while the cantaloupe is still whole working your way around it in thin peeling slices.   After it’s peeled, cut it in half and seed it….way easier and less wasteful than trying to scoop flesh out of a cantaloupe or trying to peel it later.  After it’s seeded, slice it for fresh servings or chunks for this agua fresca.

It lasts about 3 days in the fridge but it’ll be gone way before that.