Last weekend I had the extraordinary good fortune of spending the weekend with some very good friends in a beach house in Long Beach Island NJ. It was the PERFECT weekend - we relaxed, I ran, we ate, drank rose, played board games, and prepared fresh meals.
I was in shock that we managed to spend a total of $20 per person on a fresh fish dinner PLUS breakfast the next day. I wish I could wake up at 7:30am every day of my life, work out, drink coffee, and leisurely eat in tune with my body's hunger. No distractions from real life stopping me from working out, or chaos keeping me from eating when I'm hungry, or stress contributing to stress-eating.
But, alas, real life is real life.
Anyway, there were some hiccups to my beautiful little weekend. Namely, it rained on-and-off all day Saturday so we never were able to get a proper beach day in. It worked out fine because ultimately it still was a really lovely, relaxing day "stuck" inside playing board games and doing puzzles, even though a proper beach day will always be my preference.
The other grievance was that all of the peaches in the local produce shop were HARD AS A ROCK. But before I complain, how cute is it that we had to go to the fish market for fish and the produce store for produce?! We actually had to eat whatever the island could provide: fresh caught seafood or produce schlepped from other parts of Jersey. I lovedddd this method of eating, even though it spoiled my dreams of grilled peaches.
In an effort to make up for lost grilled peaches, we improvised with this grilled watermelon salad. Grilling watermelon is WEIRD, but it gives it a REALLY delicious smokey flavor. I highly recommend.
In fact, the next time I do this, I will be prepped with the knowledge that grilling watermelon yields a ton of fresh watermelon juice... infused with a smokey flavor. I bet blending smokey watermelon juice with lime, tequila and jalapeno would make for an AHHH-mazing maragarita. JUST SAYING.
Grilled Watermelon Salad
1/2 whole watermelon (with rind)
6 ounces feta
Salt and Pepper
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup basil, chiffon
1. Slice the watermelon into triangles with the rind on.
2. Brush olive oil onto the triangles liberally.
3. Grill on the hottest part of the grill over high heat for 3 minutes per side (may be more or less depending on how hot your grill is). Your watermelon is ready to flip when you see slight char marks on the watermelon meat and it is slightly warm.
4. Remove from grill and set aside to cool. While cooling, set up a collander over a large bowl.
5. When cool, slice off the rind and dice the watermelon into smaller pieces. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Place the diced, seasoned watermelon into the collander to allow the extra liquid to collect in the bowl below. Let the watermelon release juices for 5-10 minutes.
7. After straining, add watermelon to a large bowl with lemon juice. Mix well.
8. Top with basil and feta. Serve.