Vodka + Watermelon = Crazy Delicious
July 4, 2009 2:04 PM   Subscribe

SummerSnackFilter: In an attempt to relive certain college days, I purchased a watermelon and a handle of cheap vodka. Cut hole, insert bottle, and in 24 hours, deliciousness, right? Wrong. Can the tipsy hive mind tell me where I went wrong? And other things that I can make along these lines?

I love vodka melons. Love them. Perfect summer snack, especially for the 4th of July. Unfortunately, I borked the one I had sitting around. See if you can't help me see where I went wrong?

The Suspects: One large watermelon, seedless; one handle of vodka, plastic - cheap as possible.

The Story: I cut a hole in the watermelon, and gutted a good bit of the flesh inside. I took the vodka and upended it in the hole. There were a few bubbles, and then nothing. I remember it taking a while to soak, so I let it sit for about 24 hours. I came back to it and... nothing! The bottle still contained vodka and my melon contained none!

The Accomplices: In an attempt to make this work, I cut an extra hole in the melon, near the main hole - seemingly to give it air to breathe, so that the bottle wouldn't form a vacuum. Left it for another few hours. Nothing.

The Verdict: Where did my vodka melon stray? How does the hive mind prepare their melons, and how can I make mine better next time? It's summer, and without a vodka melon, I'm simply lost.

Bail: As an extra bit - anyone know of any similar fruit + alcohol concoctions? I love the simplicity of this recipe (when it works, to seems).
posted by SNWidget to Food & Drink (17 answers total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
I haven't made one of these specifically, but this link says it could take a week.

Also I wonder if ripeness of watermelon has something to do with how hydrated the melon already is.
posted by crapmatic at 2:14 PM on July 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

I've enjoyed fresh, pitted cherries soaked (for a week or more) in vodka. Nice.
posted by applemeat at 2:16 PM on July 4, 2009

Best answer: It takes a while for the watermelon to absorb the alcohol -- more than 24 hours. For a (more or less) complete, uniform distribution of vodka, it takes about a week.

The permeability of the watermelon is low -- even though the watermelon significantly porous, it contains a lot of water that occupies the existing pore space. Hence, vodka absorption will take time, unless, of course, you increase the differential pressure. You can do this by actively pumping vodka into the watermelon. This might induce the watermelon to burst, so one has to do this pretty carefully.

I like rum + watermelon. Yum.
posted by moiraine at 3:02 PM on July 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: It can take much longer than 24 hours. It also depends on the watermelon, what was the melon flesh like when you finally cut it? I've found that it's almost impossible to do with less ripe watermelons that have tough, non-porous flesh, the sort that's almost similar to cantaloupe or honeydew flesh.

Peaches, apricots and plums are good soaked in alcohol. Also, citrus fruit is delicious soaked in alcohol, especially red wine. Eating wine-soaked oranges is my favorite part of sangria.

This isn't exactly summery, it's more of an all-season alcohol+fruit option, but dried fruit is delicious when reconstituted in alcohol. Prunes soaked in rum, apricots soaked in vodka, rum, champagne, dried cherries soaked in rum or vodka, etc.
posted by necessitas at 3:14 PM on July 4, 2009 [2 favorites]

Vodka, and the ripest, sweetest cantaloupe you can find - halve, deseed, scoop, puree, mix, freeze. Life is good.
posted by _dario at 3:23 PM on July 4, 2009

Response by poster: I think the issue may have been that my watermelon was less than ripe - it was very non-porous. Tasty, and good for blending it down and turning it into juice (which I'm going to mix with vodka), but not so much for doing this project.

So, a ripe watermelon is part of the key - good to know.

Any way to tell from the outside whether a watermelon will be good for this use, or just for delicious non-alcoholic fun?
posted by SNWidget at 3:43 PM on July 4, 2009

Best answer: When you pick a watermelon it should be very heavy relative to its size. Heavy melons are fully ripe. (I feel like there should be a boobie joke there. Just me?)

In other fruit/alcohol combos. Soak raisins in the end of a bottle of rum. Store for a few weeks. Add to vanilla ice cream.
posted by 26.2 at 3:51 PM on July 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

Pineapple soaked in Vodka is good too. Just cut off the outside and slice it up like you would to eat it normally. Put the pineapple in a bowl with vodka covering the fruit and cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 48 hours. I have never had it last longer than 4 days so I don't know how long it will stay good for.
posted by shmurley at 3:53 PM on July 4, 2009

applemeat suggested cherries steeped in vodka, but I'm forced to recommend cherries soaked in bourbon. So good it will make you weep.
posted by Shohn at 5:12 PM on July 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

I've been meaning to try this recipe for brandied late summer fruit, except we're still getting early summer fruit here.
posted by Lexica at 5:19 PM on July 4, 2009

The easiest way to fill a watermelon w/ vodka is to obtain a (new, duh) large-guage horse syringe. Fill syringe, stab melon, depress plunger. Repeat as needed all over the melon.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:28 PM on July 4, 2009

Vodka and fresh mint, good times if you let it steep for awhile.

I'm going to have to try this watermelon thing now, it sounds interesting.
posted by julie_of_the_jungle at 5:32 PM on July 4, 2009

I heard some nurses saying once that in their younger days, they used to use large syringes for this purpose, as BitterOldPunk suggested.
posted by ishotjr at 6:24 PM on July 4, 2009

I concur with the syringe idea. Works great on oranges (which are nice and portable, for when you want to add a little fun to a stroll in the park or a trip to the zoo) as well.
posted by Go Banana at 8:12 PM on July 4, 2009

In other fruit and alcohol combination ideas, yesterday we put sliced peaches into glasses of prosecco. It's like a bellini, only not quite. Anyway, the fruit makes the prosecco (or champagne or other sparkling wine) more delicious, then at the end you eat the prosecco-soaked peaches, which are beyond delicious. It works best if you mash up the peach bits a little so that the wine gets more fruit juice and the peaches absorb more wine.

I bet this would be amazing with strawberries as well.
posted by insectosaurus at 8:15 AM on July 5, 2009

Response by poster: Bless you, Hive Mind. When I get back from a trip, there will be much delicious fruit and alcohol to be had.
posted by SNWidget at 9:15 PM on July 5, 2009

My trick is grabbing a chopstick or shishkabob skewer and poking holes inside the watermelon. This creates lots of tunnels for the vodka to travel into. Poke through your initial opening at various angles, and make sure not to poke all the way through the ring on the other side.
posted by kidsleepy at 8:19 AM on July 6, 2009

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