Sandía surprise

I harvested my first watermelon of the summer recently (despite a continued lack of tomatoes). The plants grew this year as volunteers from seeds I planted last summer, and the bees next door are happily pollinating them. I usually just eat watermelon as is, or maybe make them into popsicles with chocolate chips for “seeds” (see for a recipe).

I had a great savory watermelon salad at a potluck, though. It was red onion, small chunks of melon and feta, plus some mint, vinegar and olive oil. Very unexpected and summery! Maranello restaurant (Fair Oaks) serves a grilled watermelon salad with corn, feta and cucumber.

I’m always game for watermelon agua fresca at practically any taqueria, but Osaka Ya (2215 10th Street) is an amazing out-of-the-way find. It sells fresh ices and ice cream.

One of the tasty combos I heard about recently was a watermelon snow cone with green-tea ice cream and kintoki beans on top! A line forms on hot days, so be prepared to wait, but snack on some mochi while you do, and then slurp the shaved ice with glee.