Grilling isn’t just for proteins and vegetables, you can also grill fruit as well. With all of the sugar that is in fruit, heating processes such as grilling caramelizes those sugars giving them a deeper flavor. Grilling fruit is great for salads and for desserts. Like last weeks article I’m going to talk about grilling for a salad. This weeks salad is a Grilled Watermelon salad with a Fresh Orange-Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette. One of my favorite things to do is to make vinaigrettes, it’s something that I get to be very creative with. I rarely follow a recipe when making vinaigretts, I just figure out what base ingredients I need and keep mixing and matching until I build the flavor that I want. For this week I got the basic recipe from the cookbook Modern Sauces, and tweaked the recipes just a little to bring out more of the orange flavor. We also used this book for a sauce and vinaigrett recipe that I will be sharing with you next week. I hope you enjoy this as much as we do and remember to always stay hungry and creative.
Fresh Orange-Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed Orange Juice
- 1 tablespoon lightly packed Orange Zest
- 2 tablespoons Sherry Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Sweet Smoked Paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated Sugar, or Agave Nectar , or Honey
- 1/2 teaspoon Hot-Pepper Sauce such as Sriracha
- Kosher Salt
- 1 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
- In a blender mix all ingredients, except the olive oil. Turn your blender to low and gradually add the olive oil. As the vinaigrette gets thicker slowerly turn up the blender speed. Taste and adjust the seasonings and the flavors. Add more of whatever is needed whether it needs more orange flavor, more sweetness, more heat, etc.
- You can store this in a airtight container for up to a week.
Grilled Watermelon Salad (5-6 salads)
- 1 small seedless Watermelon, trimmed and cut into squares
- 3 Red Radishes, sliced thin with a mandolin or sharp knife
- 2 cups tightly packed Arugula
- 1 cup Feta Cheese crumbles
- Venaigrett as needed
- Preheat your grill to high and give it a few minutes to heat up. Spray your grill with some form of cooking spray and place the squares of watermelon over the flames. Grill until you get the marks and then flip over and do the same on the other side.
- In a bowl mix together arugula and vinaigrette, season with salt and pepper.
- Place watermelon on a plate, top with arugula mix. Sprinkle with feta cheese and place radishes throughout the salad. Use a spoon or a squeeze bottle (if you have one) to decorate around the salad.
*From Modern Sauces cookbook
Ingredient Note: Spanish smoked paprika, also known as pimenton de la Vera, comes in three types, sweet (Dulce), medium-hot (agridulce) and hot (picante). Look for it in stores that specialize in Spanish foods or carry a wide selection of gourmet foods or online.