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Simply Delicious: Watermelon

WATCH: Susan Hay and Corbin Tomaszeski make summer watermelon gazpacho

This week we drove south-west of the city to Norfolk County, an area also known as ‘Ontario’s garden.’

The area is rich with sandy soils and a warmer than average climate allowing many farmers to thrive, by growing fruits and vegetables not traditionally grown in Ontario. That includes watermelons, which we took from farm to fork in this week’s Simply Delicious.

Susan Hay and Corbin Tomaszeski make a cold soup with the vegetable.

Here’s the recipe they tried.

Summer Watermelon Gazpacho

Recipe by: Chef Corbin Tomaszeski

Yield- 6 servings

7 cups diced seedless watermelon (red or yellow)

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1 English Cucumber- peeled, seeded and chopped

½ green pepper, diced small

½ yellow pepper, diced small

¼ cup red onion, diced small

¼ cup fresh parsley- chopped fine

¼ cup cilantro- chopped fine

4-5 shakes of Tabasco Brand Chipotle Pepper Sauce

2 tbsp. white wine vinegar

Zest from 1 lime

Juice from 1 lime

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

Method

Combine the watermelon and cucumber into a blender and puree until smooth.

Place the pureed melon and cucumber into a large soup terrine and add the remaining ingredients and chill for 3 hours.

Garnish and serve with poached Shrimp and serve.

Watermelons contain 92 per cent water, so eating them is a great way to stay hydrated.

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They’re rich in Vitamins A and C, low in calories and contain minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium. They’re also rich in antioxidants, which help ward off cancer.

We went to at T&S Gignac Farms Ltd in Langton in Norfolk County Ontario to talk about watermelons with owner/farmer Ted Gignac.

His farm has been growing the fruit for 14 years, around the time Ontario farmers started growing watermelons commercially. In terms of weather conditions, Norfolk County is perfect for the fruit.

“They love the heat, and they love the dryness. We have good soil type conditions for them.” He adds “what they call the bricks, is fairly high in Ontario. People like it for the sugar, and the sweetness in them,” he said.

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