Spicy Watermelon Salad with Feta and Basil


 (Matthew Mead (AP))

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Watermelon’s sweet, crunchy flavor lends itself surprisingly well to salads, and we don’t mean fruit salad. The trick is to pair it with foods sporting contrasting flavors and textures. Anything salty and savory is good. This simple recipe for spicy watermelon salad with feta cheese and basil is a great start, but improvise as you see fit.


  • 4 cup Cubed watermelon
  • 1/4 cup Jarred banana pepper slices
  • 1 Red chili pepper
  • 2 tablespoon Lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon Toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sugar
  • 4 ounce Feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup Fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup Pine nuts, toasted


  • Divide the watermelon between 4 serving plates, then top each with a quarter of the banana pepper slices.Using a mandoline, carefully shave about a quarter of the chili pepper over each plate. Alternatively, you can finely mince the chili, then scatter the pieces over the salads.In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, sesame oil and sugar, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Drizzle the dressing over the salads, then top each with some of the feta, basil and pine nuts.