Friday, September 16, 2011

Watermelon, Feta, and Kalamata Olive Salad

Watermelon is the classic summer fruit. We always had it growing up and I always recall how my mother would salt her watermelon. I thought it was strange until a friend served this salad to us a few years ago. The salty cheese and the cool, sweet watermelon make for an interesting contrast. Add some sliced red onions and mint leaves and you've got a nice study in contrasts.

This recipe is out on the internet in, literally, a half million locations, so it's nothing new. But I've been making it a few times a year during the summer since I was introduced to it. It's a refreshing and unique salad to serve during warm evenings. There's lots of room for your own interpretation. It doesn't last long so eat it up.

This recipe is from the Food Network but if you go through the half million versions of this recipe, you will find some interesting variations.

Watermelon, Feta, and Kalamata Olive Salad

  • 4 pounds of fresh watermelon, cubed
  • 1/2 pound of feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 24 kalamata olives, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup of fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup EVOO
  1. Place the watermelon, feta, onion, olives, and mint in a medium mixing bowl and set aside.
  2. place the lime juice in a small bowl. Slowly add EVOO while whisking to blend.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss gently
  4. Let stand for 20 minutes to allow the flavors to blend

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Cherry Tomato, Hummus, and Olive Tapenade Flatbread Pizza

I found a tasty new way to use those cherry tomatoes that we're getting this time of year in our CSA box.

I adapted this from the latest Vegetarian Times spread called "Splendid Starters." When I saw this starter in the magazine I knew it would be the perfect appetizer to serve a friend who was coming over for dinner. We had most of the ingredients on hand and I could make some substitutions on other ingredients. The original recipe called for a base of puff pastry but I decided to use the Trader Joe's flatbreads instead.

The results were quite good and well received. The hummus and the olive tapenade are a perfect match. The package of tomatoes covered the three pizzas perfectly.

Cherry Tomato, Hummus, and Olive Tapenade Flatbread Pizza

  • 1 lb. cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • Trader Joe's Middle Eastern Flatbreads
  • black olive tapenade
  • hummus
  • herb mix like herbes de Provence or Bouquet Garni
  • salt and pepper
  • Preheat oven to 425
  • Cut cherry tomatoes in half and toss with olive oil and seasonings
  • Spread the hummus around the flatbread just like you would the tomato sauce
  • Add about 1-2 tbsp. of tapenade and spread it around with the back of a spoon
  • Top the flatbread with tomatoes cut side up
  • Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until the bread is crisp and browning on the edges
  • Serve warm or at room temperature