You really couldn’t get a more summery dish, even if you tried. We just survived one of the most intense heatwave on record in Victoria – this is exactly the kind of refreshing lunch that helps you get through.
Some people screw their nose up at the thought of watermelon featured in a savoury dish, but when you think about it, the pairing of the sweet and salty makes perfect sense. Even worldwide, this combination (sweet and salty) is extremely common; think, sultanas in a pilaf, prunes in a beef stew, grapes in a chicken salad, and so on. Watermelon and feta is just another one of those perfect, yet unlikely, pairs.
This super yummy, and not to mention healthy salad can literally be prepared in minutes, so is an easy one to make when you are short for time. I almost always have the ingredients in my fridge during the summer months. It is a fantastic addition to a BBQ table but it doesn’t keep too well so make sure you make it just before serving. If need be, you might be able to get away with separating the cut watermelon from the rest of the ingredients, then combining them just before serving.
I have been known to add a few roquette leaves to this salad, if I happen to have them on hand. The lovely pepperiness is lovely with the sweet ripe watermelon. Plus it bulks it out if you are feeding a crowd.
The recipe quantities I have given are fairly vague, and I apologise, but this really not the kind of salad which requires measurements. Just use your instincts with this one.
Watermelon + Feta Salad
– 1 small wedge (quarter) of watermelon
– 80g feta
– handful kalamata olives
– 1 small shallot
– 1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
– 1 Tbsp water
– few sprigs mint
– few basil leaves
– drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
Start by slicing the shallot into wafer thin rounds, and steeping them in a combination of sherry vinegar and water.
While they are ‘pickling’, peel and cut your watermelon into 2cm cubes.
Cut your feta into a 1cm dice and add to the bowl with the watermelon.
Slice the mint into a thin chiffonade and scatter over the salad, along with the basil.
Next add the olives and very loosely toss with you hands.
Remove the shallots from the vinegar and scatter over the top. Use a teaspoon to dress the salad with a touch of the pickling liquid, if desired. Drizzle on a little extra virgin olive oil.
Enough for 2, or more as a side.