Zesty Sweet Melon Mango Salad

Yes, another recipe that includes watermelon. You guys it is so dang hot here in Los Angeles, it is hard to cook things that require any heat what so ever. My family and I have been living off sliced fruit, water and simple salads we can just toss together. This month I included a fun surprise tool in my We Cook kit - a melon baller. It was so random, but I figured it would come in handy during the Summer months. I have been using it non-stop! Surprisingly Mila is consuming ten times the amount of fruit she normally would be because of the fun ball shape! She loves it and asks for "balls" now, which I can't decide if that is gross or hilarious! She is just too cute and I love that she is staying cool and hydrated by eating tons of watermelon. 

Because we have been eating so much fruit I decided to ball up a mango and pair it with watermelon. Mostly because those are two of my husbands favorite fruits. We typically ball them both up and keep them in the freezer. Frozen fruit guys!! If you don't do it, now is the time. Watermelon and mango freeze so nicely and their texture lends itself to that of a popsicle sort of. It is delicious! We've been LOVING the frozen fruit and balling up watermelon and mangos, but what we love the most is putting the fruit balls onto skewers. It is a little trick that makes eating fruit fun (and also kinda fancy). Mila loves it. Sometimes we just put out a bowl of fruit and use the skewers to pick up the fruit and eat it. Adding a fun element like that can always help making eating foods fun. Doing these types of things can also help picky eaters consume foods they otherwise wouldn't, just because it brings it to their attention in an exciting way. 

I've also been really into citrus fruits lately, for not just eating. I love cleaning my sink and garbage disposal with lemons. Fresh orange zest is honestly a natural pick me up. If you zest an orange you'll end up with not only the zest but a bit of the natural orange oils that are stored in the orange peel. I love dabbing a bit behind my ears or just cupping it in hands and inhaling the scent for a minute or two. (Do I sound like a weirdo? ;) I'm really into essential oils and I actually diffuse a concentrated orange oil for a light pick up in the mornings too. Anyways!! I made a simple mint syrup and added a bit of citrus juice to it. It turned out great and pairs well sprinkled on the watermelon and mango. I also add extra zest to the fruit as well because I love the bright kick it brings to the sweet fruit. What really heightens the refreshing aspect is the mint, it offers such a light taste. I hope you'll try it out these ideas on your next fruit salad!

To create these fruit balls and skewers I used my We Cook kit tools from this month! As most of you know, I create cooking kits for kids called We Cook. Each month your child receives a We Cook kit equipped with a fun recipe, activities and kitchen tools that enhance the recipe. My recipes are simple and easy to follow. The main idea behind my We Cook kit is to bring families into the kitchen, get them cooking together and making memories. In the process of having fun, children are learning kitchen know-how and building chef confidence. To learn more about my We Cook kits you can go here.

Simple Mint Syrup - What You Need

1 cup water

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup lemon juice

3-4 mint leaves 

What To Do

-In a small saucepan on medium heat warm the water, lemon juice, sugar and mint leaves until sugar has fully dissolved. To achieve maximum mint flavor, try ripping the leaves before placing them in the saucepan. 

-Once the simple syrup has cooled, strain out the mint leaves and store in an air tight squeeze bottle. You can use to brighten up and flavor; fruit salad, coffee, sparking wines/water or pancakes.

-To put together the melon mango salad, ball up 1 small watermelon and 2-3 ripe mangos. 

-Toss the fruit with a few tablespoons of the simple mint syrup and 1 teaspoon each of; lemon, lime and orange zest.  

-Store in an air tight container for up to a week. Try freezing for a delightful texture your whole family will love. 

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