EatSavvy Blog

How to Cut a Watermelon Into Sticks
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The first long weekend of the summer is finally (!) upon us. I don’t know about you, but my plans include a barbecue or two, not to mention lots of time spent outdoors planting in the garden. I’ve replenished my charcoal supply, stocked the freezer with homemade popsicles and purchased my first watermelon of the season.

Speaking of watermelons, some genius person—definitely not me—came up with the idea of cutting watermelons into sticks instead of slicing them into wedges, and the result is brilliant as far as I’m concerned. They are perfect for small hands to hold and great for passing around at a party. While watermelon wedges are fine, they are a little messy to eat. This new way of cutting the fruit provides everyone with a natural handle for holding their food, making it far easier to consume.

Here’s the simple three-step process for cutting your watermelon into sticks:

  1. Cut watermelon in half and place one cut side down on a cutting board.
  2. Slice the watermelon into 2-inch thick pieces. Turn the cutting board and cut 2-inch thick pieces in the other direction, creating a grid.
  3. Discard the ends, which should be mostly rind leaving you with watermelon sticks.
  4. Repeat with remaining half, or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for another time.

Finally, here are some tips to help you with your watermelon cutting and consuming:

  • Larger watermelons are easiest to cut into sticks if they are divided into three sections first. Smaller, or baby sized watermelons can just be halved before being cut. Alternatively, you can cut your large watermelon on the longer side instead in order to end up with shorter sticks.
  • Be sure to use a sharp knife when cutting watermelon.  Watermelons have thick skin and require a sharp knife to permeate the outer layer.
  • To ensure you’re choosing a juicy watermelon, pick it up and see how heavy it feels. It should seem weighty for its size, indicating there is lots of water (juice!).
  • When serving watermelon sticks at a party, layer them on a platter or in a bowl with the rind facing outwards so guests can easily grab a piece.
Jan Scott is a well-known Canadian cookbook author, food writer, and the creator of Family Bites, a popular blog devoted to family-focused recipes and easy-to-execute entertaining and party ideas. She’s been the food editor for SavvyMom.ca since 2011, and has had essays and articles published in a variety of print and online publications. Prior to making the transition to food writing, she worked for a private catering company for eight years. Her first book, Gatherings: Bringing People Together with Food was shortlisted for the 2015 Taste Canada Food Writing Awards in the Best General Cookbook category. Jan lives in Toronto, with her husband and their three sons.
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Strawberry Chocolate Chia Mousse
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Spring is the second biggest cookbook release season of the year, and my desk is currently home to approximately ten of this season’s newest and soon-to-be-released titles. I’ve spend the past few weeks cooking from the pages of each, a mix of testing recipes for review and pleasure, and my current favourite books are the ones that have given me plenty of new ideas for feeding my littlest eater.

Growing Up Gourmet is one of the books I’ve been cooking from this week, and while it doesn’t release to the public until late next month, it’s definitely one you’ll want to make a note of if you’re feeding anyone under the age of two. Written by Jennifer Carlson, co-creator of Baby Gourmet—one of the top-selling organic baby food brands in North America—this book shows parents how to make nutritious, delicious homemade meals and snacks your baby and older family members will enjoy.

This strawberry chocolate chia mousse caught my eye from the get-go. Using seasonal fruit (well, almost. Strawberries will be in season soon if it ever warms up!), plus coconut milk and chia seeds to create a mousse-like, spoonable snack you baby will love. The addition of cocoa powder, maple syrup and cinnamon gives it a decadent taste while keeping the recipe healthy and toddler friendly. I put all of the ingredients in my NutriBullet and blend for 60 seconds. Then I pour the mixture into resealable containers and pop them in the fridge overnight. The entire process takes no more than 6 minutes and makes a sweet snack my toddler can’t seem to get enough of.


Strawberry Chocolate Chia Mousse

Adapted from Growing Up Gourmet

Makes 4 ½ cup servings

You’ll Need:

  • 14 oz. coconut milk
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup strawberries, fresh or frozen

Prep and Cook:

  1. Place all of the ingredients in a blender. Blend on high for 60 seconds until the chia seeds are ground.
  2. Pour the mixture into 4 resealable containers, cover and place in the refrigerator for 6 hours or until set. Store covered for up to 4 days.
Jan Scott is a well-known Canadian cookbook author, food writer, and the creator of Family Bites, a popular blog devoted to family-focused recipes and easy-to-execute entertaining and party ideas. She’s been the food editor for SavvyMom.ca since 2011, and has had essays and articles published in a variety of print and online publications. Prior to making the transition to food writing, she worked for a private catering company for eight years. Her first book, Gatherings: Bringing People Together with Food was shortlisted for the 2015 Taste Canada Food Writing Awards in the Best General Cookbook category. Jan lives in Toronto, with her husband and their three sons.
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