I was at S&R yesterday and ran into Chef Ian Padilla of La Girolle, who had a bag of young watercress in his shopping cart. The watercress is from Basic Necessity, one of the first few commercial growers or consolidators of greens in Tagaytay (actually Silang, Cavite). Mrs. MM and I used to drop by Basic Necessity’s main warehouse at Km. 49 of the Silang highway over a decade ago, before they became such a major supplier of greens. At any rate, I also decided to pick up some young watercress and use it in a salad with some red and yellow watermelon and a bit of feta cheese. It isn’t an original idea, as I have seen it featured before, but I just googled it and didn’t realize how many recipes there are for it on the net! I just threw this salad together and it was really easy, somewhat unusual, and totally delicious. A perfect dish for the lenten/summer period as well…
Wash your young watercress greens, which are tasty and slightly peppery. Slice up some watermelon, discarding most visible seeds, and lay them on top of the watercress. I just purchased already sliced watermelon pieces at S&R, because there were just two of us at home, and didn’t need a large salad. Then I added some feta cheese marinated in olive oil with olives and drizzled a mustard vinaigrette on top. Season with salt and pepper and that’s it! The saltiness of the cheese with the sweetness of the melon and peppery flavor of the greens was a real surprise. Bright, light and healthy.
P.S. I have been crazed lately, and have had barely enough time to sit down and collect my thoughts. So we have been eating more “express type” meals… things that I cobble together from store-bought items. But with salads like this, you can see that quick and easy doesn’t have to be unhealthy. Oh, and in case you are wondering what else to use your watercress with, it pairs SUPERBLY with these sauteed chicken livers.