I hear half the country is in the middle of a wicked heat spell. What in the world? It's still 65 to 70 degrees here and raining everyday. I feel like the weather has hijacked my summer. The news keeps forecasting the weather and saying things like "It's gonna be another wet week here in the high country as we are in the middle of a monsoon season". Hold up. . . Monsoon season? Why do they keep saying that like we have heard it a hundred times before? "Oh, it's just the monsoon season". Excuse me, but I have never heard of us having a freaking monsoon season. The desert? Sure. Thailand? Completely normal (I think), but the Rocky Mountains? Since when, people?!? Am I alone here?
I'm craving the heat. I want to sweat while sitting on my deck. And while I don't want to be insensitive to the people suffering in 100 degree blistering heat, I can't help but want to steal a little bit of it. I thought of this yesterday when I made this spicy papaya sunrise because as I sipped up the refreshing, ice cold beverage I got a chill that wouldn't go away. In fact, I had to put a sweatshirt on. I did finish it though- albeit to the sound of thunder, flashes of lightening and pouring rain. It didn't seem right, but dag-gone-it, I refuse to make hot chocolate in July. And so, I am passing the recipe on to you because papaya's, watermelon and lime just taste better in the sunshine.
Fruit hydrates the body two times better than a glass of water (at least that is what I have read) so this drink will do more than it's job for all you parched people. Tropical and juicy, this healthy punch will also do your body good from another angle. By drinking this you get plenty of vitamins A and C. Yay! Jalapeno delivers more than a spicy kick; Anti-inflammatory carotenoids (aka: antioxidants) give the pepper it's bright red skin. About that- my store was out of red jalapenos and that is why you see a green one taking it's place in the picture. You get what you can get, right? I took the seeds out of mine, and used the whole 1/2 of the jalapeno. It was mildly spicy, and I actually added in another 1/4 of the pepper and still, the drink was only slightly spicy so don't be afraid to use it. If you like things hot I suggest that you don't de-seed. I like things hot. If your taste buds are a little wimpier, try using 1/4 of the jalapeno, but please, please, please, don't leave it out.
Spicy Papaya Sunrise
adapted from Whole Living, Martha Stewart via Melanie Simon
3/4 cup diced papaya (about 1 medium)
1 cup diced watermelon
1-2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 red jalapeno (sliced; seeded if desired to reduce heat)
Slice of lime, for garnish
Puree papaya, watermelon, lime juice, and 1/2 jalapeno in a blender until smooth. Add about 1/4 cups of water, if desired to thin. Taste and add more lime or jalapeno if desired.*Strain through a fine mesh sieve and chill. Serve over ice and garnish with a slice of lime.
* I used a Vita-Mix and so I didn't strain any of the fruit out. The Vita -Mix, for those of you who don't know is like a blender on speed. Pardon the reference, it was honestly all I could think of. It will blend up anything, anyhow and anyway and make it smooth as silk. Plus I wanted all that fiber in my glass, not down the sink.