Monday, May 2, 2016

Sparkling, Spicy Fruit Snack

What sweet, spicy, and sparkling new thing should you try this week? Our favorite new snack, that's what! There's nothing more refreshing or fun to eat than this layered fruit cup. You can sip it and crunch it. It's a spicy soda and a refreshing fruit cup rolled into one. It's got tropical fruit, honey roasted peanuts, dates, and it's topped off with a homemade syrup of honey, raspberries, and a little cayenne. 

We've modeled it after the Mexican tradition of eating fruit with lime and chili pepper, but the best version in Memphis is at a cool place called Las Jarochos on Summer, and the many times we've ordered it there inspired us to make one at home. You should stop by there soon, too! Just go ask Carlos Pavon for 'The Tornado' and thank us later.  

We were assigned to try out and write about the ice cream shop last June, and it amazed us. We've been back to visit often since then. We make our own version at home using local honey and raspberries in place of the traditional chamoy, a sweet and spicy Mexican condiment used mainly as a dip for fruit. Oh, and Happy Cinco De Mayo on Thursday!

Sparkling, Spicy Fruit Snack

1 personal-sized, seedless watermelon (cubed, rind discarded)
1 small jicama (peeled, cubed)
2 large mangos (peeled, cubed)
1 medium pineapple (peeled, cored, cubed)
1 medium English cucumber (cubed)
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
4-8 dried medjool dates
1 cup honey roasted peanuts
Spicy Spicy Raspberry Honey (recipe follows)
2 12-ounce cans sparkling water
6 strawberries

Once all the fruit is cut and chilled, sprinkle the fruit cubes with the Kosher salt. This will wake up the flavor. Simply layer in the cubed watermelon, jicama, mango, pineapple, and cucumber into a quart-sized jar. This recipe makes about 2 to 3 quart jars or 3 to 5 pint jars. Thread two or three dates onto each drinking straw and place one in each jar. Top each jar with 1/4 cup of honey-roasted peanuts. Top that with a generous spoonful or two of Spicy Raspberry Honey. Top that off with sparkling water, garnish the rim with strawberries, and grab a fork. (Serves 2.)

Spicy Raspberry Honey Syrup

1/2 cup lime juice (from 4 to 5 medium limes)

1/2 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon cayenne 
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 cup raspberries

Into the work bowl of your food processor, place the lime juice, honey, cayenne, Kosher salt and raspberries. Blend until smooth. Set aside until ready to use. (Makes 1 1/4 cups.)