Who needs some simple summer bites that you can whip up with few ingredients on a moment’s notice for impromptu gatherings or hosting friends at home after a day at the beach? That would be me! It’s not too much to ask, right? My friends love coming to visit me at the beach in the summer and I love having them, but I also don’t want to be in the kitchen all the day. I love making these fun and festive (and healthy) watermelon skewers because they’re fresh and tasty, and they’re not heavy or too filling. I prefer a light bite before dinner. My goal is not to roll my friends out the door after I feed them!
I made these watermelon bites all last summer and I made them differently each time. Sometimes I used avocado or a smear of goat cheese instead of feta. Sometimes I added a thin ring of jalapeño or serrano pepper. I love using yellow watermelon with red tomato and red watermelon with yellow tomato. A thin sliver of cucumber is great, too. Basil, cilantro and mint all work. Just don’t forget the salt, pepper, olive oil and squeeze of fresh lime juice! Not to get too carried away, but you could also do three different kinds of melon – watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew. Just a thought!
Now, I did say these were easy, but cutting watermelon into a lot of small cubes takes some time. Easy, but time-consuming if you’re making a lot. So if you’re doing these for a July 4th BBQ, get the watermelon cubed two days ahead! Now is the time to get your July 4th menu organized while it still feels fun. Nothing fun about putting your menu together the night before! I wrote a post a few years ago with some great menu possibilities for summer entertaining. It’s obviously not current, but it can give you some ideas. What is your favorite quick summer light bite to serve before a meal? I’m always looking for ideas!
I love seeing your creations, so please tag me @pamelasalzman #pamelasalzman so I can check them out! If you are interested in my cooking classes, but can’t see me in person, you can join me in my kitchen online for a fraction of the price of an in-person class! See this link for details.
- ½ seedless watermelon (you won't need it all) (or use different types of melons)
- 3 ounces feta, preferably sheep or goat or use goat cheese or 1 large avocado, sliced into 1 inch slivers
- 20 small mint leaves or 10 large leaves, halved (basil and cilantro also work well)
- 10 small cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
- juice of 1 lime
- unrefined extra-virgin olive oil
- flaky sea salt (or regular fine sea salt if you don't have flaky)
- freshly ground black pepper to taste (I prefer the pepper ground coarsely here)
- 20 toothpicks or small skewers
- There are several ways to cut the watermelon into 1-inch squares. My favorite method is to put the watermelon half cut side down and slice it into 1-inch slices. Then cut away the rind and slice the fruit into cubes. (This can be done at least 2-3 days in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container.)
- Place the cubes on a serving platter. Top with feta slivers or avocado.
- Tope the feta with an herb such as a mint leaf.
- Place a tomato half on top of the herb and skewer all components with a toothpick.
- Drizzle lime juice and olive oil over all pieces.
- Sprinkle with flaky salt and coarsely ground black pepper.
This recipe is easily multiplied.