Whenever we think of a salad with watermelon, the first thing that pops to our mind is a watermelon feta salad. We are wired to have watermelon with feta cheese and onions with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. While that is extremely refreshing and the ‘zing’ factor is pretty high, sometimes I prefer a bit of a change. And then I go about and rustle up a spicy watermelon salad.
It was at one of the food meets at The Oberoi Grand Kolkata. We were at Baan Thai and we started with a light and summery Asian citrus salad. I loved how the flavours came together. With my fork, I started mentally breaking the dish to figure out all the ingredients. After that, I noted the ingredients down for future use. The next summer, when I used the same dressing, with some modifications and created this absolutely fabulous spicy watermelon salad with tomatoes.
One can improvise the recipe of Spicy Watermelon Salad
Without the freshest of the ingredients, you can never make this beautiful salad. Of course, there is no hard and fast rule to using the exact same ingredients and measurements for the dressing. One can tweak the recipe as per their own taste. The most important thing to keep in mind is the balance of flavours- sweet, salty and spicy. Too much of even one spoils the fun. For example, I have used sliced onion in this. You can finely chop the onion too. The texture will come out different. You can add some celery salt or finely chopped celery stalk to this too.
So other than watermelon and tomatoes, the vegetables required are onions, coriander leaves and green chillies. You can use bird’s eye red chillies or any other chilli pepper that you wish to. The dressing is a balance between soy sauce, brown sugar or white sugar, Chinese rice wine vinegar and sea salt. You can use regular white vinegar in place of Chinese rice wine vinegar. Some toasted peanuts crushed adds a fantastic texture to the salad.
Storing and Serving Suggestions
It’s a salad, You cannot really store it. Having said that, you can make the dressing and keep it. And chop the watermelon and tomatoes and keep too. Just before serving, slice onions and coriander leaves and put together the salad. Ideally, you can make it and keep in the refrigerator for half hour, just to chill and it tastes much better.
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Spicy Watermelon Salad
- 1-2 cups watermelon triangles
- 2 nos medium sized tomatoes
- 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
- 2 nos chopped green chillies
- 8-10 roasted peanuts
- 1 onion finely sliced
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- pinch of sugar
- 1 tsp Chinese rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- It's important to cut the watermelon in thin triangles (about 1.5 inches long). You can cube then as well. De seed the tomatoes and then cut them in triagles or cut them in cubes.
- Place all the vegetables in a salad bowl.
- Make a dressing of soy sauce, vinegar, sugar and salt. Now you can balance the dressing as per your choice. For Chinese rice wine vinegar, you can use regualr white vinegar as well.
- Drizzle the dressing over the vegetables and toss them a bit. Pop in the refrigerator for 15 to 20 minutes and serve chilled.