This past weekend we had a group of friends over for Jane’s birthday. Being the entertaining type, we wanted to offer a few small bites (tapas aka mezédhes) to our guest.
While I do not know if our friends expect food when they come to visit us, everyone knows about our food blog and passion for food, so we always feel the need to have something on hand.
This particular creation was on our minds since we’re both big fans of watermelon and feta salad.
You see, the saltiness of the feta combines so well with the sweetness of the watermelon it is like an explosion of flavors in your mouth. It’s flavor mixing 101 and always produces something good. So if you want to mix something up, just remember something salty and something sweet work well together.
Since the theme was more of an appetizer/tapa/mezédhes setting, we had to think of a way to serve this. Yes, we could have done small salad plates, but we wanted something more.
Boom, then it hit us: feta and watermelon on a stick, in bite size pieces. The perfect Greek meze. Well, at least one of many.
Needless to say, it was a hit. People loved them! I personally ate around 10, but I wasn’t alone. They were so good, healthy, and easy to grab, that there were small stacks of used toothpicks on everyone’s plate.
Here are some things we learned while making this dish.
- I forgot how fast Jane can cut up a watermelon. She slices it in half and lays the flat part on the counter (so the inside is touching the surface) and shaves off the skin in strips. Then she is able to dice it up however. Neat trick I thought to share.
- Feta cheese can crumble easily while making these if you use your hands. What we found worked best, was to dice up the cheese and watermelon, and using the toothpick like a spear, add: watermelon, feta, watermelon. Sandwiching the feta keeps it in place, and gives the toothpick a nice base the stand upright. Trying to add the feta to the toothpick with your hands may result in crumbled feta – still good, but no use for this dish.
- Some people are intimidated by large chunks of feta. For both Jane and I, feta is eaten at least a few times a week. We can both eat a whole block with a napkin, we love it so much. However, others aren’t use to having it in block form, normally they have it crumbled on a salad. A few took a bit of encouragement before they tried it for fear it would be too salty or too much. The nice thing about feta is it crumbles easily so it’s not like having a piece of hard cheese. And having two watermelon pieces tamed the saltiness down.
- Sometimes, serving up a great dish only requires two simple ingredients. One of the biggest lessons learned by Jane and I when it comes to exploring Greek food is that simplicity taste amazing. You don’t always need lots of ingredients, or even steps, to create something delicious.
Well, we hope the next time you’re having company over, or you find yourself with a block of feta and a watermelon in the fridge, you give this recipe a try.
Kenton * We were able to make about 50 individual watermelon/feta towers.
* We were able to make about 50 individual watermelon/feta towers.