It is finally upon us: the height of summer and we’re all draping ourselves in front of air conditioning units and lingering a bit longer in the stores with the coldest A/C in town. I can’t imagine being a colonial-era woman in the South during summer. Those full wool skirts, bonnets, stiff flax shirts, it’s a wonder that they didn’t melt away when they first arrived here. I’d like to imagine maybe their summers weren’t as hot as ours, but regardless I want nothing to do with hot anything during these warm months. It’s quick and easy cold salads made from in season ingredients for lunches and light dinners. This time I took a typical Caprese salad and added one of my favorite summertime snacks: watermelon.
Some days I’m just struck with creativity when it comes to cooking. I partially blame these random flavor combinations on all of the eating out we do on the weekends. There’s always some chef out there mixing some savory and sweet thing together, creating the perfect balance of tart and sugar that I just can’t help emulating when I get home. Throughout the summer while Georgia Watermelons have been in season, I have been adding them to my shopping list each time I visit the grocery store purely for snacking opportunities.
It wasn’t until after a visit to the Freedom Farmers Market where there were palettes of beautiful baby heirloom tomatoes did I get struck with the “AHA!” creativity bug to create this watermelon caprese salad. Sweetness from the watermelons, tartness from the fresh baby heirlooms, and savory from the fragrant herbs and balsamic glaze. Everything you crave in a summer salad that’ll still keep you feeling light but full afterwards.
- 1/4 of a watermelon, chunked
- 1 pint of baby heirloom tomatoes in various colors
- 1 ball of mozzarella, sliced
- 2 stalks of basil
- Olive Oil
- Balsamic Glaze
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- In a shallow dish, alternate layers of tomato, watermelon and sliced mozzarella until filled completely.
- Drizzle olive oil over top.
- Crack some fresh ground pepper and sea salt.
- Wake up the basil leaves by giving them a quick "smack" in your palms so the oils are released.
- Finish with a quick drizzle of balsamic glaze.