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Yeild: 8 full portions.

This bountiful salad is a wonderful Spanish / American cuisine blend that I recently created and would love to share. Ajo Blanco is a very old-school Spanish chilled garlic and almond soup. It's rich, creamy and has a zip of raw garlic, while also inexpensive and dairy-free. Usually Ajo Banco is served with green grapes or melon which gives the soup pops of crisp crunchy texture and ever-so sweet grape fragrance - and got me thinking about watermelon. Start by making your Ajo Blanco, as you will need to cool it in the fridge before serving. If you are up for it, let it stand overnight in the fridge to really get the flavors working.

Ingredients:
Ajo Blanco:

225 grams blanched almonds (roughly a cup)

3 garlic cloves, peeled and cored

75 grams good white bread or stale baguette soaked in water

750ml (3+ Cups) Iced water

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons sherry vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Watermelon Salad:

1/8th large watermelon

1 washed cucumber

1 juicy tomato

1/2 bunch chervil

2 tablespoons kombucha vinegar (long fermented kombucha)

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Step 1: Ajo Blanco

It's mentioned before, but worth repeating: Start by making your Ajo Blanco as you will need to cool it in the fridge before serving. Leave it in the fridge overnight to really let the flavors meld if you have the time. So, lets get this going! It's not too long or hard of a task, thanks to blenders.

(Ingredients list below, for reference.)

Blend your almonds in a food processor until they are as quite fine (3-4 minutes). You may need to push them back into the bowl with a rubber spatula as they clump and climb up the sides. Slowly add 1/3 cup of the iced water into the food processor. Squeeze the bread of excess water and add to the mix. Up for the challenge instructable lovers? Mash the garlic and salt with mortar and pestle to a foamy, fine paste. This is a quality upgrade I suggest; it makes this component of the salad much more consistent, finer. Otherwise, save yourself the work and just blend it!

Add the vinegar and the olive oil, salt and pepper, and the rest of the water. If there is too much water for your mixer, you can transfer the soup into a large bowl and stir in the rest with your spatula there. Be aware that the bread may make the soup quite stodgy. If it is so, keep adding ice water until the soup is nappé consistency, or thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Taste, adjust seasoning if necessary, and reserve in the fridge. Feel free to loosen it with ice water later if it gets thicker still. Bread is an amazing sponge!

Ajo Blanco:
225 grams blanched almonds (roughly a cup)

3 garlic cloves, peeled and cored

75 grams good white bread or stale baguette soaked in water

750ml (3+ Cups) Iced water

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons sherry vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Step 2: Watermelon Salad

(ingredient list below for reference)

After washing your veggies, peel the cucumber in long vertical stripes leaving some skin in tact. Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise and dice it as finely as possible. Add this to a small mixing bowl. Take the other half, stand it up on your cutting board, and carefully cut a long, skinny, angular wedge. Then rotate the cucumber a bit and make the same angled cut. Continue to do this (imagine you are carving a large cucumber spear) until you have no more cucumber; this process is very similar to a roll cut / angled roll cut. Place these spears into separate medium mixing bowl.

Wipe down your cutting board, then halve and core your tomato. Finely dice the entire tomato and transfer into the small mixing bowl. Cut the watermelon into 1.5 inch slices, and clean it of the rind and any white pith. Take the end wedge of watermelon and finely dice this with the small dice mix. With the remaining watermelon pieces cut long 'shingles', about a centimeter thick,This will give you a nice piece of watermelon where you can get to the seeds and remove them, and then cut it into long, angular wedges.for the larger mix.

Season both bowls with salt, pepper, 1Tbsp olive oil, and 1 Tbsp kombucha vinegar. White tea kombuchas offer a lovely floral note. If you don't have 'buch vinegar you can use champagne or white vinegar.

Watermelon Salad:
1/8th large watermelon

1 washed cucumber

1 juicy tomato

1/2 bunch chervil

2 tablespoons kombucha vinegar (long fermented kombucha)

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Step 3: Final Steps

Wash, dry and pluck your cilantro into large plushes. Pour the Ajo Blanco into your serving bowl(s) and spoon on top the small dice mix, followed by the coarser mix on top as vertically as you can. Salads look great with height! Finish with sprinkling chervil on top and enjoy this delightfully powerful taste of summer :)

Cheers!

Will

Yum!!
<p>This looks delicious!</p>

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