Yesterday we showed you the local artisan goat feta that we're spotlighting this week. Local cheese like this (and the Consider Bardwell Dorset cheese that Nora showed us this morning) can be expensive. We feel that wise splurges like these are completely worth it, however, because they can add enormous flavor and value to your food - even when used in tiny amounts.
Here's the first recipe we're featuring with this cheese - a very late watermelon salad.
Watermelon salad? Why yes - salty cheese and sweet watermelon are made for each other, as many of you know.
We found a very late little watermelon at the market. It was already soft inside, getting mushy, but so sweet. We chopped it up and put it in the fridge to chill. When the melon chunks were nearly ice-cold we took them out and tossed with crumbles of the goat feta, a little fresh rosemary from our garden (nearly dried in the summer sun) and a tiny trickle of olive oil.
Ta-da! A refreshing salad suitable for summer or early fall, and for lunch, supper, or dessert. Of course, we can't take any credit for this; feta cheese and watermelon are a classic pair. We simply executed it.
At the end of the meal we also threw on a few crumbles of rosemary walnuts we had on the table, and this put it over the top into a real treat. The tangy, rich, salty goat feta was the star, though; its salty brine mixed with the sweet juices of the watermelon. It didn't take much feta, too - leaving us plenty for the other recipes we'll give you this week.
Watermelon, Rosemary, and Feta Salad
4 cups of chopped watermelon, chilled
2 ounces feta cheese (ideally goat feta), crumbled
1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary (fresh or dried)
Salt and pepper
High quality olive oil
Toss all ingredients together, adding salt and pepper to taste. You should need very little salt, depending on how salty the feta is. Drizzle just a tiny stream of olive oil over everything and toss. Chill until serving.
• Toasted walnuts finely chopped would also make a good salad - probably one more suited for dessert or the cheese course.
• Next time we make this we plan on adding some finely sliced shallots.
Have you ever made a watermelon salad?