Yes, there is indeed a National Watermelon Day -- and it's today, August 3!
To celebrate, here’s a melon salad perfect for the hot summer days. Double it, pack the dressing separately and serve it at a picnic or at the beach in a large hollowed out watermelon half. It’s also fun for a light brunch. I serve it with my Smoked Salmon Blinis…and a Mimosa, of course!
SUMMER MELON MELANGE
4 Cups each, cut into small cubes:
4- 5 Tablespoons each, roughly chopped:
Fresh Celery Leaves
Cut the melons into bite-sized cubes, roughly chop the mint, basil and celery leaves and combine in a large bowl.
1 T Agave Syrup
2 T Watermelon Juice (from the cubed pieces)
2 t. Celery Bitters
2 T Lime Olive Oil
1 T Fresh Lime Juice
Whisk the dressing ingredients together and toss into melon mixture.
I like to top my Summer Melon Melange with crispy pancetta. If you omit the pancetta, be sure to serve it with plenty of my favorite finishing salt, Maldon. Serve room temperature or chilled.
Cook’s Notes: Bitters are a liquid concentrated extraction of plants, herbs or seeds traditionally used in cocktails. Celery Bitters add a truly unique flavor here, particularly paired with the watermelon.
I like the traditional cantaloupe and honeydew with the watermelon but there are many more exotic melons available now in most markets. Or truly celebrate National Watermelon Day and use only watermelon.
What type of melons are your favorite? Let me know how you like this salad -- perfect for an August afternoon!