Watermelon Fruit Salad with Honey Mint Vinaigrette

Watermelon Fruit Salad withHoney-Mint Vinaigrette

In my post about Southwestern Chicken Chopped Salad with Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette I mentioned that ever since the end of last summer I have had an idea for a recipe with watermelon. And now, girls and boys, the time has come for this very lovely Watermelon Fruit Salad with Honey Mint Vinaigrette.

Human bodies have a diurnal pattern of waking and sleeping, eating and eating some more, activity and sluggishness, etc. Our hormones rise and fall in cyclical patterns throughout the day as well. (I am not talking about *those* hormones. We do have other kinds of hormones, you know!)

I could go on ad nauseum about diurnal rhythms (aka circadian rhythm), but I won’t. The reason that I even brought them up is because I think that I have internally programmed watermelon and orange rhythms. I crave watermelon in the summer and oranges in the winter. I do NOT crave them year round.

As a matter of fact, when it comes to watermelon I have a very strong on/off switch. One day in early summer I’ll walk into the grocery store, or Costco (woohoo!), spy the watermelons and suddenly my watermelon switch is thrown into the “ON” position. It’s like one of those giant on/off switches in a Frankenstein movie. “It’s ALIVE”, she shouts maniacally.

Watermelon Fruit Salad withHoney-Mint Vinaigrette

That watermelon switch thing is in the “on” position from about mid-June to right around the first of September. Then, bam, off it goes and I do not want anything to do with watermelon until the following June.

My orange switch comes screaming into the “ON” position right around November, stays strong through February and then slowly dims until it blinks out just before the watermelon switch is thrown. I have an apple switch, too. It carries low voltage; I can eat an apple pretty much anytime, but the craving does wane a bit during the summer. Oh, and grapes? They are a steady, straight line on the ‘Terri’s Fruit Cravings’ line graph. Stone fruits? Seasonal. They don’t really make it on the chart.

Terri's Fruit Cravings

As you can see from my graph, I am fully invested in watermelon at the moment. In Utah the real watermelon festivities begin with the arrival of Watermelons from Green River in southern Utah, but that’s not until August. My watermelon craving button was set long ago in South Carolina when I was a child. Peak watermelon season in South Carolina is right around the first of July, with the first of the local watermelons beginning in June. Although I have lived in Utah for over 30 years, my watermelon clock is still on South Carolina time.  :)

Watermelon Fruit Salad withHoney-Mint Vinaigrette

This is a fun salad, featuring watermelon, of course. The astute observer (snicker) will also see that there are other fruits involved in this salad as well. It’s a bit of an eclectic gathering of honey dew melon, mangoes and blackberries as well as the watermelon.

The Honey Mint Vinaigrette is very complimentary to this salad. I love the diversity of flavors with the honey, lime juice, white wine vinegar and mint all mixed together with the fruit. The mint gives an extra cool factor punch. For the very best flavor, be sure to serve this Watermelon Fruit Salad with Honey Mint Vinaigrette cold.

Watermelon Fruit Salad with Honey Mint Vinaigrette

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 45 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

This is an excellent cool, refreshing summer side salad. The sweet melons, blackberries and mangoes contrast well with the sweet-tart minty dressing.

Please note, the total time includes prep and chill times.

Ingredients

    For the Honey Mint Vinaigrette:
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons rough chopped mint leaves, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup neutral flavored salad oil, (I used grapeseed oil.)
  • For the Salad:
  • 6 cups watermelon balls
  • 4 cups honey dew melon balls
  • 6 ounces (weight) fresh blackberries, washed and rinsed
  • 1 large ripe mango, peeled, cut away from large seed and then into thin wedges
  • whole mint leaves, for garnish, optional

Instructions

    For the Vinaigrette:
  1. To a blender add the lime juice, vinegar, honey, dijon mustard and salt. Blitz to combine. Add the mint and blitz until mint is well chopped. Scrape down sides of blender as necessary.
  2. With the blender running on medium speed, slowly drizzle the oil through the funnel in the lid. Pour into a covered and refrigerate for 1-2 hours, until thoroughly chilled and flavors have blended.
  3. For the Salad:
  4. In a large bowl, gently toss together the melon balls. Add the mango slices and blackberries and very gently toss to combine. Garnish with mint leaves as desired. Cover and chill well. When ready to serve, pass the vinaigrette with the salad.

Notes

Be sure to wash the outside of the melons very well prior to cutting.

Nectarines are a good alternative for the mangoes.

Blueberries can be used instead of blackberries.

If desired, in place of the Honey-Mint Vinaigrette, the salad can be sprinkled with finely chopped mint, drizzled with lime juice and honey and sprinkled with salt.

Recipe by Terri @ that's some good cookin'

http://tsgcookin.com/2014/06/melon-salad-with-honey-mint-viniagrette/

Watermelon Fruit Salad withHoney-Mint Vinaigrette

Comments

  1. Carol says

    Ohhhhhh Terri-can I come to your house with my spoon…….or fork…….and have a taste of that gorgeous salad? It look AMAZING.

    I’m still waiting for the melons to taste like melons here in MA………..patience Carol………patience.

    When they’re at their peak-this is a salad I’ll LOVE. Thanks so much for sharing it.

    • says

      Gosh, thanks Patricia! I had beautifully colored food with which to work for these pictures. I was so surprised at what the camera picked up. You know how it is when your eyes see something one way, but the camera sees it in a totally different way. Sometimes you get especially lucky and sometimes you wonder if maybe gremlins are living inside your camera. I still love your pictures of the “lipstick” Valentine’s treats. They were so striking! ~Terri

  2. Dalila G. says

    What a pretty looking fruit salad!
    I’d almost hate to eat it, but I will!!
    Your pictures are wonderful, they look like they’re 3D on my laptop screen….explains the drool on my keyboard. ;-)
    Have a nice evening!

    • says

      Dalila–Ya know that moisture and computer keyboards don’t mix. Maybe you should either sit a little father back from the computer or wear a drool tray. Or maybe you could get one of those soft plastic keyboard protectors. That way, you could sit as close as you’d like to your computer screen and drool to your heart’s content. :)

  3. says

    I enjoyed looking at your fruit pattern graph. I agree with watermelon being a summer only fruit. I think it’s because that’s how we were raised back in the day when fruit only had seasons and were available that way. Now with importing so much fruit year around most people don’t remember how we waited until summer for such lovely treats. I love this watermelon salad. It would make any table look beautiful.

    Me … I love strawberries… All year around. :)

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