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Spicy Watermelon Salad with Queso Fresco

Spicy Watermelon Salad with Queso FrescoLooking for something deliciously different in a summertime fruit salad? Try this colorful Southwestern-style melon, fruit and cheese salad dressed with a tequila-lime dressing.

Recipe Ingredients:

3/4 cup fresh lime juice - divided use
1/3 to 1/2 cup simple syrup* (see Simple Syrup recipe)
3 tablespoons silver tequila
1/2 cup red onion, diced
Salt to taste
2 1/2 cups watermelon, cut in 1 to 1 1/2-inch chunks
1 1/2 cups honeydew melon, cut in 1 to 1 1/2-inch chunks
2 cups pineapple, cut in 1 to 1 1/2-inch chunks
2 mangoes, preferably ataulfo or manila (yellow), cut in bite-size pieces
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
2-3 tablespoons jalapeño chile, or to taste, small dice
1 1/3 cups Wisconsin Queso Fresco, cut in 1/2-inch cubes

Cooking Directions:

  1. Combine 1/2 cup lime juice, simple syrup and 3 tablespoons tequila. Taste for sweetness, adding additional simple syrup if necessary. Set aside.
  2. Pour remaining lime juice over onions in small bowl. Salt to taste. Set aside for 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. In large bowl, combine watermelon, honeydew, pineapple, mango, cilantro and jalapeño. Drain onions and add to salad, discarding lime juice. Starting with 1/2 cup, pour dressing over and stir. Add additional dressing, if desired. Add Queso Fresco and stir gently. Set aside and let season 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. Best served immediately in shallow bowls to capture some of the juices/dressing with the fruit.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

*Some liquor stores sell bottled simple syrup, or you could substitute an orange liqueur such as Triple Sec or Cointreau for the syrup.

Recipe and photograph courtesy of Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Inc.