Thursday, June 12, 2014

Watermelon Salad with Feta, Olives, and Fresh Mint

Probably my most surprising discovery this year, this watermelon salad melds together such interesting flavors and seemingly incongruous ingredients that are sure to raise a few eyebrows - that is, until you've tried a mouthful.

As temperatures rise over the course of summer, watermelons become a household staple, prized for their refreshing and thirst-quenching sugary flesh. In my fridge sit a half watermelon, a lemon, and a bunch of mint begging to be wed into a watermelon-mint cooler, but I thought, "why not make a salad for lunch?" A little bit of research swiftly confirms I have what it takes to make the most uncanny summer salad - all you need is a step out of your comfort zone and I assure you, as Nigella did to me, that you'll be delightfully surprised.

To prepare...
1. Very finely slice 1 small red onion. In a small bowl steep onion in the juice of 1 lemon. The lemon juice will bring out the transparent pinkness of the onion and cut the rasp. Fearing raw onion-breath? This will do it. Tried and true. Alternatively, use limes.
2. Cut watermelon into large bite-sized chunks and dice feta cheese. Place in a large shallow bowl. Roughly tear a handful of fresh parsley sprigs, add to the bowl along with a bunch of fresh mint, chopped.
3. Tip the now beautifully hued onions, along with the pinkish juices into the bowl. Add a drizzle of olive oil, a handful of olives (Kalamata or green - whichever you have, whole or sliced - I prefer whole), and very gently toss. 
4. Add a final touch of ground black pepper - and bam! Savour the mellow crunch and juiciness of watermelon with uplifting mint and parlsey, dancing in tango with the saltiness of olives and creamy feta and dressed by the tang and aroma of "pickled" red onions.

An astonishly simple salad that brings together flavors that will redefine your boundaries and transport you to Mediterranean sunshine...!

Adapted from Nigella's recipe as featured in Nigella Summer
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