Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Watermelon Punch 수박 화채 Subak Hwachae

Day 5 of posts, I'm almost done with the week of posting.

It has been super humid and hot in Seoul for the last couple of days so I'm going to introduce you to a refreshing dessert drink that you guys caa make to help cool down the summer.

Watermelon Punch or 수박 화채 is a refreshing drink that will take you away from the heat of the Summer and help cool you down. Hwachae is commonly made with various fruits and sweet drinks and served as a dessert or snack. There are many variations, and some are even made with edible flower petals or grains such as barley or rice cakes. Traditionally, the base drink is water sweetened with honey, syrup, or sugar. In modern times, carbonated drinks and fruit juices are also commonly used. Hwachae made with watermelon (subak) is a summer favorite.

Today I'm going to add some ginger ale, but other soft drinks such as 7 Up and lemonade will also work. you can also substitute it with some fruit juice. You can also add some rice cake balls to complement the dish and to help give it some chewiness to cut through the crunch from the watermelon.

2 cups watermelon, balled or cubed
1-1/2 cups honeydew, balled or cubed
12 - 16 rice cake balls (gyeongdan) - optional (Recipe follows)
2 cups ginger ale
3 tablespoons Korean drinking vinegar (or pomegranate or cranberry juice)
pine nuts for garnish - optional

1. Scoop out watermelon and honeydew with a melon-baller. (Or, cut into about 1-inch cubes.) Place them in a large bowl along with any juice from the fruits.
2. Add the ginger ale and the drinking vinegar (or pomegranate or cranberry juice) to the fruits. Stir gently. Taste the drink and adjust acidity and/or sweetness by adding more drinking vinegar (or juice) and/or sugar.

Simple rise cake balls:
1/2 cup glutinous rice powder/flour (sweet rice powder/flour)
2 teaspoons sugar
pinch of salt
4 tablespoons boiling hot water

1. Mix the rice powder, sugar and salt in a bowl. Mix in the boiling hot water with a spoon. When cool enough to handle, knead by hand until a dough is formed.
2. Shape the dough into a 3/4-inch thick cylinder. Cut into (or pinch off) 3/4-inch pieces. Roll each piece between the palms to make a small ball.
3. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the rice cake balls. Cook until all the balls float. Transfer to a large bowl with cold water to cool. Drain.

When you are ready to serve put everything together and add some ice cubes into the punch so that it keep cool in the heat.

And there you have it, a simple and fruity drink to keep you cool and refreshed in the summer. Tomorrow will be blog number 6, so don't forget to check back from more recipes.

Until tomorrow keep safe, happy and healthy. See you tomorrow!!

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