If you’ve ever heard the phrase, “don’t knock it ‘til you try it,” you may be a picky eater. Or maybe you’re just very emotive about foods you don’t really like. Either way, your reaction to certain snacks is most commonly expressed with a short, sweet, “eww” or “thanks, but no thanks.”
Since I’ve always been a foodie, I will literally try any food item once. My wife, however, does not share the same dining mindset. When I told her I was going to feature this recipe for Blue Watermelon Walnut Salad, she thought it sounded great. Her only hang-up was the blue cheese, of which she’s not a big fan (to be completely honest, neither am I).
I gave her the old, “don’t knock it ‘til you try it” speech, and that’s exactly what she did. I prepared it, she tried it, and she liked it! Whether you’re a picky eater or not, you should definitely give this recipe a try. The sweetness of the fruits paired with the blue cheese and walnuts is a combination you won’t regret.
BLUE WATERMELON WALNUT SALAD
1 cup walnut pieces
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
2 cups balsamic vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 sprig fresh rosemary
4 ounces fresh baby greens
2 oranges, seedless, peeled and sectioned
4 cups seedless watermelon cubes
2 cups seedless grapes, halved
2 cups fresh, trimmed and sliced strawberries
1 cup crumbled blue cheese
Heat the walnuts in a seasoned wok or heavy non-stick sauté pan over medium for a minute, and stir in the sugar and soy sauce. Adjust heat to prevent burning while constantly stirring the nuts until the sugar melts. Continue to stir and cook until the nuts begin to stick, and the mixture becomes sticky. Spread the nuts over a sheet of waxed paper or parchment paper and cool. Break apart into small pieces and crumble. Set aside.
Heat the vinegar in a heavy, non-corrosive saucepan over medium heat, and stir in sugar. Continue to stir, and adjust heat to bring the mixture to a simmer. Add the rosemary sprig to the pan. Continue to simmer until the contents of the pan reduces by 1/2 its original volume. Set aside.
Divide the greens among six or eight salad plates, and arrange the orange sections, watermelon, grapes and strawberries over the greens. Drizzle the balsamic syrup over the fruit, and the cheese crumbles over that. Top with the candied walnut pieces and serve.
For more recipes using watermelon, check out the “Recipes” section of the National Watermelon Promotion Board website.
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