Grilled-and-Chilled Watermelon Salad
MAKES 4 to 6 SERVINGS
To prepare the salad, cut the ‘meat’ off the melon into blocks roughly 2 inches thick, 2 inches wide, and 4 inches long. Heat a flattop griddle to 375°F or heat a nonstick skillet on medium-high. Coat the top and bottom of the watermelon blocks with sugar, pressing down firmly on the block to ensure the sugar sticks. Place the watermelon block on the griddle or skillet and let caramelize (turn light brown) for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the blocks and cook for 2 to 3 more minutes. Remove the watermelon to a baking sheet or plate and place in the refrigerator to cool.
Remove the watermelon blocks from the refrigerator and cut into 1/2-inch slices. Place 1/4 cup of greens on each plate, then layer with sliced watermelon. Drizzle on a tablespoon of honey-yogurt dressing before adding some country ham and crystallized basil.
MAKES 2 CUPS
Place the honey and yogurt in a small bowl and mix together. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to 6 days.
MAKES 1 CUP
Remove all the stems and thinly slice the leaves (julienne) into strips. Place sugar and basil in a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Turn on and let it run for 1 minute or until the basil appears to have married with the sugar.
Place on a baking tray and put in a dry location for up to 6 hours or until the moisture has been removed.
You can expedite the drying process by placing it in a 200°F oven or dehydrating it if you have a dehydrator machine. The basil will stay fresh when placed in an airtight container for a couple of weeks.
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