Marge Perry Newsday columnist Marge Perry

Marge Perry, Newsday's weekly 3 Simple columnist, also writes, broadcasts, teaches and speaks about cooking, food and nutrition.

TIP To choose watermelon, look for a darker "field spot" (the yellowish area of the rind) that indicates the watermelon was allowed to ripen longer in the field.

Sweet, inexpensive watermelon quenches thirst and hunger in these low-calorie and nutritious recipes.



1 (3-pound) seedless watermelon, rind removed, cut into 1-inch cubes (4 cups)

1/4 cup whole mint leaves

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1/4 cup whole basil leaves

2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon raspberry vinegar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

4 ounces feta, diced (about 1 cup)

1. Combine the watermelon, mint and basil in a large bowl.

2. Whisk together the parsley, lime juice, raspberry vinegar, salt and oil. Gently place in the feta; toss with the watermelon mixture. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis per serving 146 calories, 6 g protein, 14 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 8 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 645 mg sodium

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8 cups seedless watermelon cubes, divided

1 cup cold water, divided

1/4 cup sugar

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1 tablespoon grated ginger

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1. In a blender, combine half of the watermelon cubes and 1/2 cup of the water and process until pureed. Strain the mixture into a bowl and repeat with the remaining watermelon cubes and water.

2. Combine the sugar, ginger and lime juice in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and combine with the strained watermelon juice. Refrigerate until serving. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis per serving 144 calories, 2 g protein, 37 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 0 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 4 mg sodium



Taste the jalapeño to determine how hot your pops will be; adjust amount accordingly.

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons water

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup whole mint leaves

3 cups watermelon cubes

1 jalapeño, seeded

1 tablespoon corn syrup

2 teaspoons lime zest

1. Combine sugar, water and lime juice in a saucepan, bring to a boil and cook 30 seconds, stirring to dissolve sugar. Stir in mint and let stand, covered, 30 minutes. Strain.

2. Combine minted lime syrup, watermelon, jalapeño, corn syrup and lime zest in a blender and puree. Pour into 8 ice pop molds and freeze until firm, about 6 hours. Makes 8 servings.

Nutritional analysis per serving 57 calories, 0 protein, 16 g carbohydrates, 0 fiber, 0 fat, 0 saturated fat, 2 mg sodium