With summer on its way, we are all looking for delicious ways to stay cool and hydrated. Our friend Amber from A Toasted Crumb was inspired by our refreshing Poco Bites® Cocktail Cucumbers and created this Cucumber Watermelon Salad that is easy to prepare and loaded with summer flavors.
Cucumber & watermelon: have you ever thought about pairing these two together? They are, after all, from the same plant family (Cucurbitaceae) and share many of the same health benefits. Both are extremely high in water content, with cucumbers coming out on top with 95% water, while watermelons are about 93% – the combination of the two makes for an ultra-hydrating salad.
Our crunchy Poco Bites® with the soft, juiciness of watermelon is also a nice contrast in texture and that is what makes this salad such a perfect summer standard. The freshness of both flavors is tied together with the creamy, saltiness of feta cheese and the sparkling effervescence of the homemade mint dressing.
Hungry? Ready to jump in?
The first step in building this gorgeous salad is to make the dressing. You simply just combine all the ingredients into a jar with a lid (or any container with a lid that seals tight will work) and shake it up. If you can’t find champagne vinegar, you can still get the same sparkling effect by substituting sparkling water. Amber notes that if you want to use sparkling water instead, prep the other ingredients in the jar, shake them up to combine and then, right before you dress the salad, add a splash of the sparkling water, and gently stir it before you pour it over top.
Amber used our Poco Bites® Cocktail Cucumbers for this salad because of their size, versatility, and of course, crunch factor. Not only are they a quick, crispy, crunchy snack that energizes on the go, they are also the perfect size for chopping into bite-sized pieces. There’s no need to peel these cucumbers, they are good to go right out of the bag after a quick rinse. The watermelon should also be cut up into bite-sized cubes. Being a foodie, Amber likes to build the salad directly on a plate with no tossing. This helps her control the ratio of cubed watermelon to sliced cucumber so that there is the perfect amount in each bite.
To build the salad on a large serving platter:
- Start with watermelon cubes
- Add the cucumber
- Crumble your feta cheese over the platter
- Add your fresh herbs
If you cut your basil into ribbons using a chiffonade technique, you will get beautiful strips that will wrap snuggly around the cucumber slices. To do this, gently roll two large basil leaves and chop them horizontally. For the mint, you can just use your hands or kitchen shears to tear or cut them directly into the salad.
Now it’s time to make this salad sparkle: Amber suggests that you pour about a third of the dressing directly over the salad. If you’ll be serving this at a get together, you can place the dressing on the side next to the serving plate for guests to be able to add more if they desire.
While you can make this salad ahead of time, it’s best to keep all the ingredients separated until you are ready to serve it. This helps the cucumbers and the watermelon stay crisp and their flavors intact. The dressing can be made well ahead of time, you just need to give it a little shake before pouring it over top to serve.
Serve this Cucumber Watermelon Salad alongside your favorite protein for an easy, refreshing, and delicious side dish that celebrate the freshest flavors that summer has to offer.
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