This salad hovers satisfyingly between sweet and savory. Local melons shine in late summer, with produce stands piled high with fresh watermelons and cantaloupe. Serving watermelon with a shake of salt is an old trick for accenting its flavor. Here, the salty tang of feta revisits that technique, which works equally well to highlight cantaloupe’s sweetness.
Allow the honey to release from the measuring spoon more easily by first pouring a little of the olive oil on the spoon.
To cut the basil into ribbons, stack similarly sized leaves and roll them up cigar-style on the longest side. Use a sharp knife to cut the basil into thin strips.
seedless watermelon or cantaloupe, in small cubes or balls
English cucumber, cut into quarters lengthwise and then into 1/2-inch slices
2 1/2 cups
cooked black beans
cubed feta cheese (approximately 1/4-inch cubes)
extra-virgin olive oil
honey (see Tips, above)
freshly squeezed lime juice, plus more for serving
large handful basil leaves, cut into ribbons (see Tips)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a serving bowl, mix the melon, cucumber, beans, and feta.
In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil with the honey and lime juice.
Add the basil to the serving bowl and then drizzle the dressing over the salad. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Go easy on the salt; the feta is salty.) Toss to combine.
Serve chilled or at room temperature, spritzed with lime juice just before serving. This salad can be assembled in advance without basil and refrigerated for a day; in this case, add the basil just before serving.