I have a confession I hated watermelon most of my life. I don’t know why but I just never really liked it. It wasn’t until a couple years ago when I decided to try it again, that I realized what I was missing. It’s funny how much our taste buds change as we get older. The first time I tasted watermelon in a salad though, I have to admit I was a little skeptical. It was at a 4th of July barbecue a couple of years ago and I only remember that there were greens, watermelon and feta in the salad. I was quickly blown away by the sweet and savory contrast that the watermelon and feta brought to the salad. It was so dang good.
I knew I wanted to recreate this salad but it had been so long since I had first tasted it that I wasn’t sure what that original salad had in it so I just winged it and it turned out better than I could have even imagined. I used arugula for the greens, which I know arugula isn’t everyone’s first choice when it comes to salad greens but just trust me on this one. The arugula adds the perfect amount of bitterness that contrasts the sweetness of the watermelon and candied walnuts and the saltiness of the feta cheese. If you aren’t normally an arugula fan, I encourage you to give it a try!
Tips & Tricks:
- It is super important that you don’t make this salad ahead of time. You want to make it just right before serving. Watermelon is full of water (hence the name) so this salad will get very soggy and wilted if you make it ahead of time. Start assembling it about 10-15 minutes before you want to serve it.
- You can make your own candied walnuts or you can buy them. You can usually find them on a shelf near the produce section at your local grocery store.
- I used passionfruit juice instead of orange juice in my dressing, so if you have access to it, use it! Otherwise orange juice will work just fine!