Monday, August 22, 2011

The Dog Days are (Not) Over

There was a rumor circulating in my office today that it's going to be 90 degrees tomorrow in San Francisco. 

90 is a big deal here in the land of completely temperate weather. Even just thinking about it put me in a late summer mood. 

So despite the fact that the city is currently shrouded in fog and it's 54 degrees out, I made one of my favorite summer salads for dinner. It didn't hurt that I had a little watermelon in the fridge from last Wednesday's farm box. 

The recipe for this is adapted a thousand times over. The first time I ever had a version of it was at a restaurant I can't for the life of me remember the name of. It was somewhere in Atlanta. It was September and I was down there for a video shoot. The video vendor took us out for dinner and I simply could not pass up what was to me then a crazy combination of watermelon, ricotta salata, and mint. I've loved it ever since. 

Tonight I decided I wanted to go the feta route, so mixed up the ingredients once again. Here's the basic framework:
(Ugh, did I just say that? Too much time thinking about work these days!)

Kate's Summer Watermelon Salad


Watermelon, peeled and cut into 1/2"-1" cubes
Herb(s), torn or chiffonade: I find mint or basil to be my favorites but anything leafy (i.e. not rosemary or thyme) could work. Tonight I used mint
Cheese, cut into 1/2" cubes: Feta and ricotta salata are two of my favorites, feta being tonight's choice. You could also try a crumbly aged goat cheese. The cheese should be creamy, salty, and be a bit tangy
Extras: olives (I used black oil cured but if those are too aggressive for you, try kalamata), blanched toasted almonds I skipped the almonds tonight)
Dressing, whisked to combine: extra virgin olive oil, sherry vinegar, salt, pepper

Mix everything in a bowl. 
Love summer. 

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