Watermelon-Goat-Cheese-Appetizer

Watermelon and Goat Cheese Appetizer

By Sally Cameron on July 01, 2013

appetizers & snacks, featured,

9 Comments

Watermelon, the essential summer refresher teams up with creamy goat cheese and crisp cucumber for a cool, tangy appetizer. It’s perfect for a 4th of July celebration or any summer gathering – an unexpectedly delicious combination.

Austin, Texas : BlogHer Food 2013 Conference

We recently visited the great city of Austin for the BlogHer Food 2013 conference. As much as it was a weekend of fun, food and friends, it was also about learning, growth and more serious issues in the wide world of food.

BlogHer holds conferences for opportunities to learn and grow as food writers and publishers of food blogs, so we do a better job for our readers. We also have the chance to see new tools, foods, make new connections, and talk with the people behind the brands about their products.

This year also featured a fantastic panel called  “The Next Generation – Finding Solutions at the Intersection of Childhood Obesity and Food Insecurity in the USA”. So while we have fun, there is also a serious side about issues surrounding food in this country that attendees can take advantage of.

The sponsor list for the 2013 conference was impressive, but my favorites were Bob’s Red Mill (I have a pantry full of their products), Udi’s Glutten-free (discovered great burger buns and soft new GF tortillas), Organic Valley (love their milk, butter, and dairy products), Whole Foods (shop there regularly), and Lundberg Farms (love their rice and rice products), just to mention a few. KitchenAid is always there with an array of great appliances. They have an impressive high capacity food processor coming out I’d love to play with.

Stubb's, Austin TX

While Austin is famous for barbecue (we did eat at Stubb’s), one of my simple takeaways of the trip was this easy little appetizer. I’d never thought of pairing goat cheese with watermelon, and it turned out to be a terrific combination.

When choosing watermelons, I go for the small Dulcinea mini watermelons. They are always sweet and seedless, with gorgeous ruby flesh and a thin rind. I bought another mini type and was disappointed in the flavor, plus it had a very thick rind and not as much flesh inside.

First, cut 1″ thick slices of watermelon. Then using a 1 1/4″-1 1/2″ round cookie cutter ( about 1 1/4″ high), cut circles out of the melon. The hotel served them in a square shape. If you have a small square cookie cutter, that would work. And if you don’t have cookie cutters, then just cut squares as best as you can. Make the pieces big enough so you can hollow a bit out to pipe in the cheese.

watermelon cups

With a melon baller tool, hollow out a little half round to pipe in goat cheese. To make the goat cheese more pipe-able, I whisked it in a small bowl with a little milk to make it creamy. With a piping bag or plastic zip bag and a star tip, you can make them look fancy.

If you don’t have the tools, not to worry. What this is really about is combining these great flavors. Spoon a little of the goat cheese into or onto the watermelon. Garnish with cucumber. A squeeze of lime over the top finished things off. Mint would be nice too.

Watermelon & Goat Cheese Appetizer

With any leftover watermelon, make watermelon juice. Puree your scraps in a blender to liquefy, then pour through a fine strainer . You’ll be left with refreshing watermelon juice, which we enjoyed all weekend after shooting this post. Adding fresh lime juice tastes great too. To lighten it up, combine with sparkling water.

Perla's Seafood, Austin

If you get to Austin, the Hilton is a nice place to stay. For seafood lovers, don’t miss eating at Perla’s. Their fresh seafood is fantastic. And be sure to get a side of their cheese grits with lobster stock. Delicious!

Sally Cameron @ BlogHer Food 2013

For more ideas on what to serve up for your July 4th celebration, read this post.

9 Comments

Leave a Comment
Madonna/aka/Ms. Lemon | July 1, 2013 at 10:20 pm

That is just the most gorgeous presentation not to mention a treat to combat this hot weather.

Frances | July 4, 2013 at 4:58 am

The presentation is mouthwatering and I can’t wait to try it! When is next BlogHer meeting? Thanks

    Sally | July 8, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    It will be in 2014 Frances. The food conference is held once a year. I think it’s Chicago next. just type BlogHer food conference into your search engine and you should get info. There is the greater BlogHer conference covering everything. Chicago this year. In fact it, it’s very soon!

shanthini | May 24, 2014 at 3:28 pm

Absolutely love the presentation. Unfortunately we don’t get these seedless watermelons in South India.

Edie | May 7, 2015 at 4:34 am

Any suggestions if you’d rather not use goat cheese? Not everyone enjoys the flavour or are vegan. What substitute would you recommend?

    Sally Cameron | May 8, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    If you are vegan, you could try silken tofu pureed until the consistency of goat cheese with the flavors you like, then pipe it in. You you enjoy dairy, you might try thinned cream cheese as the substitute. Hope that helps! Let us know if you try either of these and how they work for other readers benefit.

Jana Kostrzewa | August 4, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Love your photos, especially the Stubbs BBQ photo and the indoor Austin BlogHer 2015 photo. Question: What camera did you use, and what software/post adjustments? I’m new to photography, and I keep coming back to your posts – yes, for the recipes – but also because your photography is so very beautiful.

    Sally Cameron | August 4, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    Hi Jana. Thanks for the kind words. Glad you are enjoying the photos and the recipes both! Nice to hear. We are all Canon in terms of gear. I shoot with a 6D and Kent uses a 5D Mark 3. We shoot in raw, then process with Lightroom. You can take online classes to learn Lightroom. Be patient with yourself. There is a lot to learn. I am still learning. Kent shot the BlogHer Austin conference photos. I have been doing the food shots since the start of the year (just learning) but prior to that it was all Kent. We shoot tethered to Mac laptops. Hope that helps!

Jana Kostrzewa | August 6, 2015 at 1:22 am

Thanks so much, Sally! I’ve heard of Lightroom – I guess it’s time I learned more about it. Absolutely *stunning* photos on your website. Simply a joy to behold!

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