Nina’s Tips & Techniques: Summer Salad featuring Watermelon

Last time I cut a watermelon I almost lost a hand! They are so big and awkward, my knife gets stuck in the middle. Help!

Yup, big, round, slippery things are pretty hard to cut. For some reason people tend to automatically think their first cut should be down the center, but when you are cutting large things it’s easier (and safer) to cut off center. You can use this same strategy with large winter squash, pumpkins, etc. First, try trimming a small slice off one side – this gives a flat surface to balance on. Once your melon is sitting securely on a flat side you can cut off-center pieces, and then slice those pieces into slices. If you want your watermelon to come out in those perfect wedges then you can cut it in half by inserting the tip of a long chef’s knife into the center, and then pulling down, as if your knife is a lever. Then turn the melon and do the same on the other side.

Is there an easy way to get the seeds out?

Sorry…this is one of those kitchen tasks that just doesn’t have a short cut. Turn up the music and have fun with a tedious task. 

Featured Recipe: Watermelon and Cucumber Salad with Feta and Mint