Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Watermelon and Feta with Toasted Cashews – Old footage, new narration, watercolor filters, and one really amazing summer salad!

I vaguely remember eating a slice on watermelon as a young child and watching in shock and horror as my grandfather started sprinkling salt on his slice. I said whatever the 5 year old version of “what the hell are you doing?” was. He said something like “it makes it sweeter.” What? Needless to say that didn’t make any sense at the time. Fast forward 30 years later to a café in San Francisco where I was served a green salad garnished with sweet, juicy watermelon, crumbled feta che ese, and toasted cashews. Wow, it was amazing! What a combination of sweet, salty, juicy, creamy, crunchy, and just…mmmmm. Ah ha! I finally understood what grandfather was doing. Better late than never.

This video recipe was pieced together with footage I shot last year when I was just playing around with my new webcam. I found it and decided to add some new voice-over and show you this great salad. Yes, it’s a bit unusual, but one bite and you will be hooked. You’ll get to see and hear both sleeveless and blurry 2006 Chef John, as well as the new and improved 2007 Chef John. So, here’s the clip, a whole year in the making, as they say. Enjoy!

1 small ripe watermelon
4 oz feta cheese
1/2 cup toasted cashews
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
*optional garnish: some fresh mint or basil


julianwang4 said... least we never saw this before. And you're right. Coincidentally, I had some feta around + watermelon, and in just 1 minute and 43 seconds...lemonade...and a nice sun to watch in the sky...ahhh.

Chef John said...

ahhhh is right.

Anonymous said...

cool watercolor effect, but the actual salad didnt look that bad I have to try this I LOVE feta with anything. Thanks.

Jewels said...

LOL @ the 2006 and 2007 Chef John!


Anonymous said...

I always eat my watermelon with the salt. it give it a little more def. than just it being sweet on it's own. yay! you finally got the slogan fixed! congrats! :)Mmm... i think I'll have to go buy some watermelon today!

Stephanie said...

Your "first attempted humor" made me laugh really hard :D

I'd love to try this but I'm allergic to lettuce :(

Chef John said...

Thanks! Try it anyway, skip the lettuce, its just a base. Eat feta and melon, you must eat feta and melon!

Catherine said...

Not only a delight for the appetite but for the eyes too!

Rebecca said...

Chef, I thought my wonderful mother in law created this. She was an amazing cook and watermelon and feta was a perfect snack she put out for us. No lettace or nuts, she served it in a pita half, which made it juicy, salty and dry at the same time. Perfection! She also made the best cup of chi (way before it was popular) to serve with it. Thanks for the memory and smile. I'm off to buy a watermelon.

Chef John said...

I would have liked your grandmother!

Anonymous said...

you know i made this, but i like everything REALLY REALLY neat, so i shishkabobbed it. a piece of lettuse, a melon ball, feta,and cashews rolled in Dulce de Leche i beilieve its called stuck to the stick,lettuce,melonball,rolled cashews, just until its filled. real nice for the summer barbecue.

Chef John said...

pictures please!!

Anonymous said...

sorry! ate um all up...... wish i said that before i ate it......:P

Vassil said...

Hilarious, as always!
I grew up in Bulgaria where melon and feta are often eaten together. So are honey and feta (with mekitsi - fried kneaded dough). In fact, there were few things you were allowed to eat without feta!
Anyway, I hadn't thought of mixing the watermelon and feta in a salad. Looks great, thanks for the idea!
P.S. Pre-crumbled feta is a sham!

Chef John said...

there are two kinds of people in the world - those that use pre-crumbled feta and those that won't.