I had a fabulous dinner with my family at Hundred Acres in New York City last week.

I don’t drink very often, but I absolutely loved their Spicy Watermelon Lemonade with vodka. I couldn’t wait to make a non-alcoholic rendition of this delicious cocktail at home, so I picked up a watermelon yesterday and got right to work.

I made mine with lime juice instead of lemon, and I believe I used more watermelon and less citrus than Hundred Acres because I didn’t want to add any sugar (if you’d prefer a more tart drink, you can certainly use more lime juice and less watermelon).

I wasn’t quite sure how to flavor the drink with the jalapeno, so I sliced up a large chile and let it infuse the juice for 30 minutes…I thought it was perfect, but you might like yours with less or more of a “kick”.

To say I am obsessed with this drink is a bit of an understatement…I foresee many batches of it in my house this summer. You can blend in some ice if you like, but know that the flavor will be diluted a bit if you do…the same goes for adding some seltzer.

It’s a perfectly delicious refresher without the alcohol, so the vodka is 100% optional.

Jalapeno Watermelon Limeade

Yield: approximately 3.5 cups (enough for 2 people- or 1 if you're me)

Prep Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Without the jalapeno and vodka, this watermelon limeade makes a wonderfully refreshing, family-friendly summer drink any time of the day. If you do use the jalapeno, please use care when handling raw chiles...

Ingredients:

*approximately 4 cups/32 ounces cubed seedless watermelon, tossed into a blender (I swear by my Blendtec)
*juice of 2-3 seeded limes (or lemons), preferably organic (the amount of lime/lemon juice you use is really up to you...I would add the juice of 2 limes/lemons, taste, and add more if you like)
*tiny pinch of sea salt
*1 jalapeno chile, sliced into 1-2 inch pieces (seed it if you want a mild spicy flavor)
*splash or more of vodka- optional

Directions:

1. Blend the watermelon until smooth (you will end up with about 28 ounces). Add the lime juice and the pinch of sea salt and blend again.

2. Drop in the sliced jalapeno and allow to infuse the watermelon limeade for 30 minutes or so. The flavor will become more pronounced the longer you leave the jalapeno in...be careful when you are tasting the drink as you don't want the raw jalapeno to make contact with your lips.

3. Use a slotted spoon to remove the jalapeno pieces and save in the refrigerator to make another batch of the cocktail. Blend the juice again before serving, then pour into glasses over ice (you can strain the juice before serving, if you like, but I did not find it necessary).

4. Garnish with additional fresh lime and add vodka to taste, if desired.

Inspired by the Spicy Watermelon Lemonade with Vodka at Hundred Acres Restaurant in New York City

Note: If you haven’t already, please enter my $150 Joss and Main Giveaway, which closes on 7/5/11.

More tasty summer drinks:
Watermelon Cocktail Cooler from Gourmet Fury
Watermelon Cilantro Margaritas from In Jennie’s Kitchen
Blackberry Mint Limeade from Savory Sweet Life
Cherry Limeade from She Wears Many Hats
Mango Strawberry Spritzer from Heather Christo Cooks
Saturday Sangria from Aggie’s Kitchen