Inspired by and adapted from Patricia Wells’ Cookbook The French Kitchen Cookbook.
Sometimes we are lucky enough to come across artistic people who touch us, inspire us, and for whom one develops a fond admiration, hoping to cross paths at some point in life.
Natural artists, they are.
Whether photographers, bakers, cooks, artisans, farmers, or designers, their art marks us in an indelible way.
Patricia Wells’ work has done this for me. She resides perhaps in one of the most admired, visited, inspirational places on earth. La Provence française. A love affair that many of us keep inside with a region that with its natural beauty and intrinsic light has it all.
Even if we take way everything else from Provence, that alone would be “la perfection.”
In her latest cookbook, Patricia shares a great salad with two ingredients most of us love -watermelon and feta cheese – and combines them with a sprinkle of fresh mint leaves.
I substituted the mint leaves with fresh herbs and it worked perfectly well.
I will continue to be spiritually transported to Provence. Always strategizing ways to spend time there with my family and perhaps, one day find myself next to Patricia as one of her students, visiting the stands of local marvelous foods and produce or stopping at the local patisserie to indulge in the local pastries. I will not miss the chance to share how much I have loved her cookbooks all along.
Enjoy this summery, fresh and distinctively different salad with your little ones. They will love how refreshing the combination of watermelon is as an appetizer too!
- 2 pounds watermelon, rind removed
- 1 cup Greek feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves, cut into a chiffonade (thin strips), or left whole if small
- 1 cup mixed baby greens (or fresh herbs)
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil or lemon oil
- Cut the watermelon into large chunks. Place an equal amount of melon on each of four chilled dinner plates. (Alternatively, cut the melon into four large circles, each one inch thick and four and a half inches wide, and place one circle on each plate.)
- Sprinkle one-quarter of the cheese, mint, and greens on the watermelon.
- Then make the dressing: Place the salt and lemon juice in a jar with a lid and shake to blend. Add the oil and shake once more.
- Taste for seasoning, then drizzle the dressing over each salad.