|Give me red!|
When it is summer I can’t think beyond watermelons. They’re my favourite summer indulgence! Okay, I know, I know that the mango is the king of fruits and all that yabba-dabba-do BUT maybe it is my missing sweet tooth that doesn’t let me enjoy mango too much. I do relish banganpalli mangoes but I don’t crave for them and nor will I eat them morning, noon and night like most people I know and yes, I’m also happy to skip them (shudder to think of all the body heat problems that this causes!) if there’s a slice of watermelon somewhere around.
I first had the Watermelon and Feta cheese salad at a Greek food fest. At first I was a little apprehensive about what it would taste like but the watermelon was just calling out to me and I couldn’t ignore that! So I headed to the buffet and helped myself to some salads along with this particular one. Curiosity got the better of me and I sampled this one first. My first reaction was, “Gosh! Where have I been living to not have tasted this divine salad.” And then I proceeded to serve myself some more with the main course and a little bit after dessert. Also, I must tell you that I just absolutely love salads and I can have them itself for a meal. So there!
After this I’d had this salad at a friend’s place, again at some other restaurant and so on. For the longest time I’d been wanting to make this at home but it just never happened. Now my mom (in-law) loves salads too and when they were coming to visit, I knew that there had to be salad on the dinner table. Usually I like to keep my salads very colourful so they double up as a centrepiece, also it helps to trick reluctant salad eaters into sampling some and then eventually falling in love with it.
Since watermelon was in season this time of the year, I decided that this would be the perfect time for this refreshing salad. I didn’t want to rob the watermelon of it’s glory so I skipped the onions and the olives, yes this makes it really easy-peasy. And if you know me by now, I won’t splurge on a single ingredient so there was no way I was going to buy the authentic Greek Feta that’s been imported all the way from, well, Greece. So I found this Feta cheese by Kodai Dairy Farm in the supermarket and bought some of that for this salad. Oh boy! You really, really can’t tell the difference and as for the salad? It was delicious! The huge empty salad bowl was proof enough.
The best part about this salad is that you just need to keep the ingredients ready and prepped beforehand, just mix it all up before you serve. Voila!
300 gms of watermelon, peeled, de-seeded and cut into pieces
1 cup of Feta cheese, crumbled
2-3 tsp of Balsamic vinegar mixed with 1 tbsp of olive oil
A handful of mint leaves, roughly chopped
You can add salt if you like, but for me the Feta is salty enough so I don’t go there
Place the chunks of watermelon in a salad bowl, sprinkle half of the crumbled Feta cheese on this and drizzle the Balsamic on this. Toss well to ensure that the Balsamic coats the watermelon.
Add the rest of the Feta cheese, garnish with mint and serve immediately.
* You can add onions to this recipe – just sliced them thin and soak them for an hour or two in a mixture of white vinegar and water, drain and add. This helps to cut out the pungency of the onions.
* Another addition to this salad that adds a lot of punch is chopped black olives.
* It is absolutely necessary for you to serve the salad the minute it is done because otherwise the watermelon gets really soggy and looses the crunch.
I’m sending this to Salad Splendour at my own space