This Grilled Watermelon dish with feta and arugula-mint pesto is the quintessential summer side. Sweet, savory, bright, and packed with flavor. This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older. #SeedOfAGreatSummer #CollectiveBias
Summer is here, guys. Officially.
And with the temperature creeping its way to 90 degrees, I can tell. How’s the weather where you are?
Hopefully it’s warm and perfectly picnic-, BBQ-, and outdoor-worthy. That’s the best part about summer to me. Spending as much time as possible outside. The long days and the late nights. The gatherings that happen with family and friends—preferably outside, with a cool breeze, plenty of wine, and a s’mores-friendly fire pit.
I absolutely love summer entertaining. First, it’s easy. Summer is all about taking things easier, slower. You can focus on fresh fruit and produce, cold dishes, make-ahead masterpieces, and your guests will be happy.
Firing up some burgers or food on a grill becomes less about what is actually being cooked, and more about the gathering itself. Some of my favorite summer gatherings are a bring-your-own type of situation, where the host creates some unique, wonderfully fresh sides and guests bear their favorite grilled proteins. Summer BBQs are communal, fun, and casual. My favorite part is the emphasis on fresh, farmers market-favored ingredients.
This is my take on that perfect fresh-from-the-garden, easy-but-delicious summer side.
I love grilling fruit, and I love a good summer watermelon salad. Let’s combine them, shall we?
My favorite watermelon combinations are feta and mint. I thought of that combination and took it one step further. This sweet and savory side dish is composed of lightly charred grilled watermelon, salty feta, subtly sweet pine nuts, and a fresh arugula and mint pesto that is bright and just slightly peppery.
It’s so easy to put together, but I think it looks quite pretty when presented.
To pair with this grilled watermelon salad, I chose The Dreaming Tree wines. I’ve talked about my love for The Dreaming Tree wines on the blog before. I admit, I first started buying them because I’m a huge Dave Matthews fan, but everyone I’ve ever served this wine to loves it. For my summer gatherings, I always have Crush and their Chardonnay on hand. The Dreaming Tree makes incredible, unique Californian wines that are down-to-earth, affordable, and pair very easily with food (but are just as good drinking as is!).
I will cheers to that.
What’s your favorite easy, fresh summer side? Let us know in the comments below. You can find The Dreaming Tree wine at your local grocery, drug, or supercenter store. Use this product locator to find Dreaming Tree near you!Print
This Grilled Watermelon dish with feta and arugula-mint pesto is the quintessential summer side. Sweet, savory, bright, and packed with flavor.
- 1 small seedless watermelon
- Pine nuts
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta
For the Pesto:
- 3 cups baby arugula (about 5 oz)
- 3/4 cup packed fresh mint
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Sea salt and pepper
- Prepare the pesto. Combine the arugula, mint, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a blender or food processor. Pulse a few times until incorporated. Pour in the olive oil while processing, blending until emulsified. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper.
- Slice the watermelon into thick wedges (with the rind kept on) and grill until charred, about 2-3 minutes per side.
- Arrange the grilled watermelon on a large platter and drizzle with the pesto. Sprinkle the crumbled feta evenly on top and finish with additional toasted pine nuts and some fresh mint sprigs. Enjoy!
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 240
- Sugar: 16g
- Sodium: 143mg
- Fat: 17g
- Carbohydrates: 19g
- Fiber: 1.5g
- Protein: 4.8g
- Cholesterol: 11mg