SUMMER and MOUNTAIN STREAMS are what most Koreans picture when they hear the word watermelon 🍉.
It’s the must-eat fruit during summer vacation.
Let’s check out how Koreans enjoy watermelon, along with some tasty punch recipe ideas!
1. Cut a whole watermelon and share it
The easiest way to enjoy a watermelon is to cut one into slices!
The video above shows some easy and pretty ways to serve them.
It’s like a national rule in Korea that you bring at least one watermelon when visiting a mountain stream (계곡) in summer.
Once you set up your tent or mat near the water, toss it in making sure it’s secured with rocks (you don’t want it to go rogue and float away). Who needs a cooler when the stream will keep the watermelon chilled like a natural refrigerator?
You can slice them up and share with your family or friends after swimming. It’ll help you make some sweet memories.
2. Make Korean watermelon punch (Hwachae)
It’s always FUN to make watermelon punch or hwachae.
It’s also perfect for parties since it makes a super cute dessert.
All you need are:
- Sprite or Chilsung Cider
- Canned fruit (or canned peaches)
- Any topping you like!
A simple hwachae recipe is:
- Cut a watermelon into halves.
- Scoop out the pulp.
- Chop canned fruit into bite-sized pieces.
- Add watermelon scoops and canned fruit to the hollowed watermelon shell.
- Pour in some sprite (or Chilsung Cider) and milk. That’s it!
If your watermelon isn’t sweet enough, feel free to add a little bit of sugar or condensed milk. We won’t tell 😉
3. Try a frozen Korean watermelon bar (Soobak Bar)
Korean watermelon bar (수박바 or Soobak Bar) is an all-time favorite treat for Korean kids.
Although it doesn’t taste exactly like watermelon, it’s quite refreshing and delicious.
4. Get tipsy with a Korean watermelon soju cocktail
This cocktail idea is really cute and a little dangerous for summer!
It’s similar to the watermelon punch recipe, but designed for adults.
All you need to do is:
- Scoop out the watermelon flesh and put it in a blender.
- Add lime juice, honey and ice then blend them until they’re smooth.
- Pour the juice into the hollowed watermelon shell.
- Add a bottle of soju or clear spirit of your choice and mix them.
Be careful because this one will creep up on you!
5. Get a sugar high with Korean watermelon bingsoo
If you’re a fan of bingsoo, but too far from a Korean café, check out this watermelon bingsoo recipe!
It’s similar to the hwachae recipe and makes a great party dish.
You’ll need to:
- Cut a watermelon into halves.
- Scoop out the fruit.
- Make a dome with the watermelon pulp to use as a cover later.
- Get shaved ice.
- Put in the watermelon balls, shaved ice and red bean paste in the hollowed watermelon shell.
- Add toppings of your choice like: mochi, corn flakes, ice cream or more red bean paste.
- Sprinkle in some condensed milk.
- Cover bingsoo with the watermelon pulp dome. Perfection.
6. Stay hydrated with watermelon juice
You can simply cut watermelons into cubes and use a blender to make juice. You’ll see these in every cafe in Korea during the summer.
The video above shows a pretty way to present the juice.
You can add syrup/sugar, or skip it to stay hydrated in the heat.
What is the Korean word for watermelon?
Watermelon is called soobak or subak (수박) in Korean.
How many calories do Korean watermelons have?
31 kcal per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Watermelons are considered a low-calorie fruit, perfect for staying slim in Korea.
Korean watermelon season
Watermelon is considered a summer fruit in Korea.
You’ll see a lot of seasonal menu items like soobak juice, soobak-ade or even soobak latte at cafés in Seoul when the weather gets hot.
Can cats and dogs eat Korean watermelon?
Yes! It’s safer to give them watermelon pulp without seeds/rind. Serve in moderation as a treat.