Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Mosaic Salad -- #recipe @LeslieBudewitz

LESLIE: Call this salad "edible art."

This is a fun summer salad for a dinner party or potluck, but it’s also great just for a family dinner. Arrange the cubes in a zig-zag, or Rubik’s cube style in lines of one color, or indulge your inner Mondrian and go free-style. 

And use your best EVOO – the one you keep for salads, not the one you cook with. I used mint in the salad pictured, but we tried basil ribbons another night and loved it. Oregano or tarragon would be tasty, too. Flake salt is terrific because it melts into the melons and cucumber and complements the sweetness of the fruit.

I cribbed this from a Good Housekeeping magazine I snared somewhere; it called for beefsteak tomatoes in addition to the cherry tomatoes, but I thought one tomato enough and that cantaloupe would add both color and flavor. I was right. :)

It’s best served on a square or rectangular plate or an oval platter, to emphasize the fun. (And yes, toss the leftovers in a bowl to serve up for lunch tomorrow!) It's also best quite cold, so if you take it to a party, slide it into the fridge if people aren't ready to eat just yet.

I’ve left the quantities vague because it’s hard to buy 1 cup of watermelon or 10 cherry tomatoes. Plan on 2 cubes of each ingredient per person. 

Mosaic Salad

Seedless watermelon
Feta (in a block, not crumbled)
English cucumber
Cherry tomatoes
extra-virgin olive oil
mint leaves, the smaller the better
flake salt
fresh ground black pepper

Cut the watermelon, cantaloupe, and feta in one inch cubes. Cut the cucumber in one-inch thicknesses, then trim the sides to make a square – or vice versa – and save the sides for your next green salad.

Arrange the melons, cheese, tomatoes and cucumber on your platter. Drizzle with olive oil, and top with the salt and pepper. Dash on a few mint leaves, using any bigger leaves for garnish to dress up the plate.

Plan on 2 cubes of each ingredient per person. Keeps nicely for 2-3 days, though the salt will drain some liquid from the cucumber and watermelon.

"Budewitz's finely drawn characters, sharp ear for dialogue, and well-paced puzzle make Jewel Bay a destination for every cozy fan." --- Kirkus Reviews

From the cover of AS THE CHRISTMAS COOKIE CRUMBLES, Food Lovers' Village Mystery #5 (Midnight Ink, June 2018, available in trade paper, e-book, and audio):  

In Jewel Bay---Montana's Christmas Village---all is merry and bright. At Murphy’s Mercantile, AKA the Merc, manager Erin Murphy is ringing in the holiday season with food, drink, and a new friend: Merrily Thornton. A local girl gone wrong, Merrily’s turned her life around. But her parents have publicly shunned her, and they nurse a bitterness that chills Erin.

When Merrily goes missing and her boss discovers he’s been robbed, fingers point to Merrily—until she’s found dead, a string of lights around her neck. The clues and danger snowball from there. Can Erin nab the killer—and keep herself in one piece—in time for a special Christmas Eve?

Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. A past president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat, an avid bird-watcher.

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