Thursday, July 9, 2009

Dinner With My Niece

The other night I had dinner with my niece, at Bridges, a wonderful restaurant on Granville Island. It was a lovely evening with excellent food, delightful company, fabulous ambience -- all the things that make up a perfect evening. My niece and I don't see each other as often as I would like, so when we get together, we have lots of catching up to do. It was a rainy evening, and we were seated by the window and next to the fireplace. It doesn't get any better than that.

The menu in the upstairs formal dining room was an interesting concept. For a set price, we could order appetizers, a choice of entrée and a choice of dessert. The appetizers were particularly interesting, because the chef sent out an assortment of wonderful things, but the one I absolutely loved the most was watermelon and feta salad. Yes! It's delicious and very refreshing. The combination of sweet watermelon, salty feta cheese and tart balsamic vinegar will make your tastebuds do the dance of joy. It's a fabulous salad for a summer evening and very easy to make. And you can substitute the feta cheese with low-fat feta cheese, and it's just as good.

Ingredients:
• Per serving:
• 3/4 - 1 cup of cold watermelon, cubed
• 1/4 cup of feta cheese, crumbled or cubed
• 1/4 medium red onion, cut in paper-thin slices
• 1/4 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinaigrette

Preparation:
Place the watermelon in a bowl, top with most of the onions, then the feta cheese. Place remaining onions on top. Sprinkle with balsamic vinegar, and serve. This recipe can be made in individual servings or multiplied and served in a large salad bowl.

Today is my niece's birthday. I remember the summer morning when my brother called to tell me she was born, and now she has grown up to be a lovely young woman.

Happy Birthday, Colleen...!

20 comments:

Kathy's Klothesline said...

You must be a wonderful aunt. You seem to have evolved into a friend for your niece. I wish I could say the same about mine and my nephews, but we are not only separated by miles. The distance is a continuation of the distance we have with the parents. Sad. I am happy to have close relationships with my children and their children.

Who would have thought watermelon and onions would be so good together......do you think the cheese is the binding ingredient that marries the flavors?

DUTA said...

Sweet watermelon and salty cheese is a common concept in the mediterranian, balkan, and middle eastern countries. It's indeed a delightful combination.

Happy Birthday to your niece ; she's lucky to have you as an aunt.

Leslie: said...

Bridges is a fabulous restaurant & I haven't been upstairs to the dining room in decades. Must do that soon. The salad sound great, if you like watermelon which you know I don't, but I know that ambience of which you speak.

Judi said...

You have just posted the recipe of my favorite summer salad! It is so refreshing, isn't it?

I originally heard about this from Nigella Lawson. In addition to what you posted, she soaks her red onions in lime juice to turn them bright pink and sweet; and, she adds black olives, minced fresh parsley, minced fresh mint, and just a drizzle of olive oil. I have found any combination is equally delicious.

I'm glad you had a good time with your niece at Bridges. Nieces need their aunts and vice versa!

Land of shimp said...

Happy Birthday to your niece! It sounds as if you like her as well as love her, which is a wonderful thing indeed.

For those who might be a little iffy on the watermelon, try the same salad but substitute cucumbers (you can also add a little bit of fresh basil). I've tried both, and both are absolutely lovely.

Carol E. said...

What a nice tribute to your niece! The salad sounds yummy; thanks for sharing. I just had a nice lunch with my aunt and uncle and blogged about it, too.

nomore said...

Tell your niece to, Happy birthday ! Oh, seems so very wonderful resturant...

Amelia said...

mmmmmm...that sounds absolutely YUMMY!! :) Thanks for sharing the recipe. Yippee!

Country Girl said...

I ADORE watermelon salad! This is a variation on the one I recently posted, which incorporates Kalamata olives.
http://chroniclesofacountrygirl.blogspot.com/2009/07/lunch-on-porch-among-other-things.html
I have got to try your version! Am heading to kitchen now.

Marguerite said...

The restaurant is beautiful and the watermelon appetizer looks divine. Such an interesting mix of flavors. And Happy Birthday to your niece, Colleen! Lovely post!!

Deb said...

Isn't it lovely to spend time with the daughter of a sibling?

Charles Gramlich said...

Wow, what a beautiful restruant. Glad you got to have some time with your niece.

Leah Fry said...

I'd have to substitute some other cheese. Feta doesn't do it for me. The rest of it sounds great, though.

PhilipH said...

I'll try the watermelon salad very soon; sounds scrumptious. Balsamic vinegar is so versatile; I use it on strawberries, now in full season, and it's great.

Canarybird said...

Sounds like a lovely lunch and a great setting Jo! Sigh...I left Vancouver before there was even a Granville Island, let alone a market and that restaurant. I will have to come back one day and stay there for a while to catch up on what's new in Vancouver! I have that same fun with my granddaughter who's now also a lovely young lady.
Sharon.

Hilary said...

That salad sounds delicious! Happy birthday to Colleen. :)

meggie said...

Happy Birthday to your niece!

Paula Slade said...

Happy Birthday to your niece! :)

I would have never thought of combining watermelon and feta with red onion, but I can imagine that this would be delightful! I'm going to give it a try! Thanks Jo!

Kimberly said...

Oh my...this sounds so delish. I can't wait to try it.

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