Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Celebrations Southern Salad

One of the best things about living in the South is Southern cooking. While rarely as stylish as California cuisine, with it's "baby this" and strange sounding "on a bed of that", Southern cooking instead relies on delicious "may I have another helping please?" taste.

Since moving to Texas from California nine years ago, I have enjoyed finding new Southern style recipes each month in a regional publication called Southern Living

Their recipes are consistently easy and delicious. I quickly learned I could trust the Southern Living test kitchen to provide winner recipes for my table.
The magazine's July issue arrived here early in June. On the cover was the picture that is on the top of this post. It took me a second to register what was in that side dish/salad:

Watermelon and tomato.


I kept looking at it, and the recipe, trying to image those two flavors together.

I couldn't.
But I knew this magazine always publishes fantastic recipes, so I decided to give it a try.

Here's the ingredients:

Tomato-and-Watermelon Salad

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Prep: 20 min., Stand : 15 min.

Chill: 2 hr.

Recipe adapted from Seasoned in the South: Recipes From Crook's Corner and From Home by Bill Smith
SL June 2007

5 cups (3/4 inch) seeded watermelon cubes

1 1/2 lb ripe tomatoes, cute into 3/4 inch cubes

3 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1 small red onion, quartered and thinly sliced

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Romaine lettuce leaves (optional)

Cracked pepper to taste

1. Combine watermelon and tomato in a large bowl; sprinkle with sugar and salt, tossing to coat. Let stand 15 minutes.

2. Stir in onion, vinegar, and oil. Cover and chill 2 hours. Serve chilled with lettuce leaves, if desired. Sprinkle with cracked pepper to taste.

I chopped up a bowl full last Sunday, and it didn't last long. The flavors melded in a new taste sensation, a lively crispy chilled refresher salad, perfect for supper on a warm summer day.

Since currently I am on a goat cheese kick, I even tried some of that on one serving. It was good too, but the original recipe really needs no additions. It has plenty of "wow!" as it stands.

Well, I know the Canada crew will be partying on Sunday, and the USA gang next Wednesday. Around here, we always try to incorporate red, white and blue into our Independence Day meal plans. This salad would certainly do the trick!

And if I were a Canadian, I would be digging out some tiny maple leaf cookie cutters and watermelon maple leaves would be substituting for the unimaginative cube shapes.
How cute would that be?
And come to think of it, maybe I can use my Christmas bell shaped cookie cutters to make Liberty Bell cut-outs for us.
I wanted to give everyone the recipe early enough to sneak in a half recipe test run. It does sound weird combining watermelon and tomatoes, not to mention red onion and vinegar.
But trust me, like I trusted Southern Living magazine, and give it a try.
I think you will be please.
Happy Celebrations!


Marie Christopher said...

Well, I'm glad you tried it first. I don't think I would have, but I'll take your recommendation and try it. This old Texas lady is open for new ideas.

Lovella ♥ said...

. . it's always amazing how well flavours marry. It wasn't that many years ago that I never tasted strawberries or papaya in a green salad and now who hasn't. Well, OK maybe it was just us Canadians that were slow on the draw.

Your Canada Day celebration salad looks quite yummy.

good news Julie, someone posted a recipe you can eat too. I don't see flour listed anywhere.

Julie said...

Yes, Lovella, no 'dangerous' ingredients here!!....and it sounds so weird that I am dying of curiousity wanting to taste it!!
I will definitely print out your recipe, Jill, and take your word for it that it is good!!! I'll serve it to my next 'unsuspecting'

I had to smile at your suggestion of Maple Leaf cookie cutters...It would take a patriotic American to come up with the idea...We are all so laid back here, - we could learn to be a little more patriotic!! (we DO love our country, we just aren't very demonstrative about it)

Lovella ♥ said...

I have my maple leaf cookie cutter and it's ready to celebrate.
Poor Terry is out looking for the most patriotic thing that I've begged for . . ..for years. If he comes through, you'll all know on the first.

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Lovella: Most patriotic thing? Well, if Terry has a hard time finding a Texas flag up there, just let me know and I'll ship one up your way in no time.

Lovella ♥ said...

the enormous flag we have . . sitting primly on my bench begging to be hung . . .on what? a flagpole. poor man, I haven't heard from him in hours.

I just wanted to say . .that it is so sweet of you to remember the celebration of the big country to the north. You are very rare indeed.

A Lady said...

I think I missed the memo to post a recipe on a latest recipe. I will make ammends.

Kate said...

What a combo! Sounds yummy too. Thanks! Now, if we could just find blue lettuce (I'll bet it exists in California!).

Reminds me of other odd combos that work - like strawberries in vintage balsamic vinegar or strawberries dipped in sour creme then brown sugar. (I'm seeing a red theme here.) Yum!
K Q;-)

Darla said...

I'm going to give up my California baby this on a bed of that and try your Southern Salad. I'm waiting until our home grown tomatoes are ready tho.

Sorry Kate, no blue lettuce here. Maybe next year, LOL! Could I interest you in some epazote or garlic chives?


Anonymous said...

hey jill, this recipe looks inviting,i'm going to try it!!!!!