Saturday, August 20, 2011

What the heck do I do with this leftover watermelon? Part 1 (A.K.A. Tomato, Watermelon & Feta Salad)

Why would I think this watermelon was the right size for our family?  It's seriously bigger than my daughter's head!
Oh my goodness have I stumbled upon some yumminess to share with you.  You are going to obsess over this one.  (Or maybe you're just not the kind of person to obsess over food in which case, who are you and what is that like?)  I think it just might be my new summer potluck dish---Tomato, Watermelon & Feta Salad.  I know.  Sounds weird, right?  I was skeptical too, especially regarding the feta factor.  But alas, today I decided that I could not let another pile of leftover watermelon go to waste.  Something about watermelon makes me overestimate what my family of three can consume.  It just looks so darn good but after the second day of sticky summer sweetness, those juicy wedges just start to lose their luster and pretty soon I am sick of the space the sizable hind of the leftover half watermelon is hogging up in my fridge.  So what's a gal to do with a half a watermelon and no one to pawn it off on?  Watermelon, after all, is a cancer-fighting superfood and a one-way ticket to the bin is no way to treat such a gift of nature.  You wouldn't put Superman in the trash if he stayed a little too long, would you?  Not on my watch.

My version of Tomato, Watermelon & Feta Salad is a bit of a hybrid between Paula Deen's Watermelon Salad with Mint Leaves and Rachel Ray's Tomato-Watermelon Salad, mostly because I was curious and wanted to experience that tomato-watermelon party alongside the surprise of feta paired with watermelon and, as always, I like to get creative.

1/4 large watermelon (but NOT the enormous monsters)
3-4 ripe tomatoes
1/2 large red onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup EVOO
4 oz feta
salt and pepper

Basic directions:
1) Slice the watermelon and tomatoes into cubes of roughly the same size (I went with about 1/2-1 inch thick).
2) Peel the onion and thinly slice.
3) Chop up your herbs and toss in a bowl with your tomatoes, watermelon and red onion.
4) Crumble the feta over the top.
5) Dress with the red wine vinegar and EVOO, generously sprinkling some salt and pepper.
6) Give it one last toss and bring to the table to enjoy.

This is seriously amazing.  I was prepared to be disgusted.  I really was.  But the combination of the salty feta and the sweet watermelon playing off of the parsley and mint is just divine.  The EVOO adds just the right amount of richness while the red onion gives it some kick.  Honestly, if I made it again, I don't know what I would leave out or add.  Maybe I should go give it another taste. . .yep, still delicious.  Wouldn't change a thing.

Alas, with only 1/4 of the watermelon gone, I still have a 1/4 left. Time to do some investigating for Part 2 in my escapades in repurposing the not-so-washed-up leftovers of a superfood.  Grilled watermelon anyone?

I'm curious. . .what do you all do with your leftover watermelon?

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