Watermelon Salads That Shout Summer

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Nothing says summer like watermelon. By the slice, in a margarita or even a gazpacho. This summer has heralded in a handful of delicious watermelon salads around town, too. Yes, it’s true. Watermelon salad is nothing new. But did you know it might actually be a vegetable, and is a member of the cucumber family? It’s no wonder the fruit — er, vegetable? — pairs well with cheese, olives and even tomato. Here are ones that have us drooling.

Hayden’s Post

While not something you’d automatically think to toss together in your salad bowl, Hayden’s Post’s combination of Mediterranean olives, red onion, crumbled goat cheese and Marcona almonds is genius. Tossed with a chili vinaigrette and micro herbs, there’s a punch from olives that balances the light flavor of the melon.

Hayden's Post Watermelon Salad

Calico

Fresh and locally grown arugula offers a surprising and spicy counterpoint to the sweetness of the watermelon in this salad from Calico, tossed in honey and lime and served with goat cheese and sea salt.

Bin 22

This hearty salad full of sunflower seeds and feta is substantial enough to make it a full meal. Find it at Bin 22 served with watercress and feta and tossed in apple balsamic dressing.

Bin22 Watermelon Salad

The Kitchen

Bin’s sister restaurant, The Kitchen, gives the salad a twist with the addition of heirloom tomato, feta, vertical harvest micro greens and lemon-oregano vinaigrette. If this sounds like a strange combination, just remember the old adage: What grows together goes together. And since tomatoes are a fruit, this combo makes even more sense.

The Kitchen Watermelon Salad

Local

Compressing the watermelon in this salad results in a more concentrated flavor, with a denser texture and more colorful appearance. Local adds contrast with salty, crispy prosciutto (a new twist to pairing prosciutto with melon). They also include cucumbers, watercress and targouda cheese. Everything is tossed with a simple mix of extra virgin olive oil and honey vinegar.

Glorietta

The gang at Glorietta is also compressing watermelon for its take on the summer salad. Here, find it with pickled shallots, Castelvetrano olives and Calabrian chile for a tangy, cool starter. For anyone who finds watermelon too sweet, then this is the salad for you. The piquant zest of the shallots and chilies, along withe savory tang of the olives, will leave you want to lick the plate clean.

Glorietta watermelon

 

 

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About Author

Also originally from the South, Cara Rank discovered cooking was a creative outlet that helped her relax after long days writing magazine and newspaper articles during the past eight years in Jackson. Really, she just missed Southern food. A lot. During a 12-year career as a journalist, Cara has won numerous awards for her work and has written about everything from rodeo queens to Dolly Parton tomatoes. She spends her weekends making jars of pickles and jam and amazing dinners for friends. She loves shishito peppers, Chicago-style hot dogs and elderflower-spiked cocktails.

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