I'm practically giddy slicing watermelon for an appetizer in mid-September. After all, melon is a summer treat right? Well, summer often arrives late here in the SF Bay Area. But that's okay, I'm undeterred when it comes to squeezing out every last drop of sunshine before I acquiesce to the brisk fall days that lie ahead.
I typically avoid precious food for entertaining, especially for large groups, as it's just too time consuming. And slicing up dozens of consistent little squares of melon, cucumber and cheese and then carefully skewering and garnishing is definitely veering towards precious. So much so, in fact, my 10 year old son, who is mostly unfazed by anything that happens in the kitchen actually said - "wow Mom, that sure is fancy"!
Every rule has an exception and fancy food has its place - like, for instance, when your guest list is short and one of them is a chef. But if you don't do fancy no matter who's coming for dinner, these ingredients will taste just as good tossed together and served as the salad course - perhaps add a handful of mache lettuce and a simple vinaigrette instead of the balsamic.
If fancy is your middle name and time consuming isn't an issue, then by all means bust out some mini cookie cutters like these and go crazy!
Melon + Cucumber + Feta + Mint Skewers
1/4 small, seedless watermelon sliced into bite-sized squares
1 seedless cucumber peeled and sliced into bite-sized pieces similar in size to the melon
3-4 oz brick Greek feta in brine, again sliced to match the size of the other ingredients
20 small mint leaves and 20 skewers
A nice aged balsamic vinegar and eyedropper if you have them on hand or this balsamic glaze from Trader Joe's.
Slice, assemble or toss all of the ingredients and serve IMMEDIATELY - you want everything ice cold and crunchy.