Watermelon , one of the most loved fruits all over the world,this wonderful fruit, quenches our thirst and hunger at the same time and has very few calories.. a boon for anyone on a diet. This fruit which is more than 91 percent water, is a god sent on a hot humid day, as it keeps us hydrated. Watermelon has been used in cocktails or mocktail with amazing results as it blends well with almost all flavours as well as lending its pretty red colour . Using it as a ingredient in salads also produces amazing results, the use of feta cheese in an chilled italian watermelon salad is awesome specially if its sprinkled with chopped mint leaves… hmmmmm.
Today, the recipe i will share with you is a fusion of the east and west cultures, it is a simple salad using just few ingredients but it makes for a good centerpiece at any party, and a good appetizer before any meal. For me, watermelon brings back those lovely memories of the hot and dry Pune summers. The vendors at the market and roadside with their carts full of this luscious emerald green skinned fruit heralded the beginning of summer for us, which in turn meant half days at school. Walking home at 1 pm in the hot heat, we could hardly wait to reach home, where my mom would have drawn the curtains, making our home oh so cool, the fan whirring at full speed and the best site, my mom cutting cold watermelon and giving us heaped platefuls of cold cut watermelon sprinkled with salt. A good way of keeping our electrolytes in balance. Miss those good old carefree days.. brings to my mind a beautiful song sung by late kishore kumar, koi lauta de mere beete hue din, of course i always have an appropriate hindi song for any situation..:) because of my love for old hindi songs, but will keep that topic for another post. Do try this recipe and don’t forget to serve it chilled. and do give this post a like and share it with your friends.
Half a seedless watermelon
1 bowl of hung curd
1 tbs of whole caraway seeds ( shah jeeri) gently roasted
few strands of saffron, soaked in a tbsp of hot water and ground to a paste
half cup of grated cottage cheese(paneer)
juice of half a lemon
1 tsp of finely grated lemon rind
finely chopped cilantro, and few mint leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp of honey.
Take a melon baller spoon and scoop out small balls from the watermelon
Put the balls in a strainer for 15 mins till excess water drains out
Meantime , in a bowl, mix together the hung curd, saffron, honey, salt pepper, lemon rind and lemon juice to get a amazing sunny dressing.
Now arrange the watermelon balls in a pretty dish, sprinkle the grated cottage cheese (paneer) and half of the chopped cilantro and mint leaves and gently mix.
Finally pour the yogurt sauce over the balls, and sprinkle generously with the roasted caraway seeds and remaining chopped cilantro and mint leaves…enjoy.