1 small ripe rock melon, peeled & cut into wedges
juice of 1 lemon
6 whole shallots, peeled
1 cup water
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
5 tablespoons olive oil
5 tomatoes, cut into quarters
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
¼ cup finely sliced mint or tarragon
1 mild red chilli, finely diced


1.Preheat the oven to 170°C.
2.Pour the lemon juice over the melon wedges and place in the fridge while you prepare the other salad elements.
3.Finely slice two of the shallots and put in a bowl with water, vinegar and sugar.
4.Stir to combine and set aside.
5.Cut the remaining shallots into quarters and toss with two tablespoons of olive oil, then roast for 20 minutes until soft and slightly crispy.
6.Meanwhile, char four of the tomatoes in a dry pan until one side begins to blacken (slice the remaining tomato to be served raw in the salad).
7.Remove from the heat and set aside with the shallots.
8.Toast the fennel seeds in a small dry pan until fragrant.
9.Remove from the heat and add the remaining olive oil.
10.Drain the pickled shallots, reserving 2-3 tablespoons of their pickling liquid.
11.Arrange the melon slices on a large plate and top with roasted and pickled shallots, charred tomatoes, tomato slices, herbs and chilli.
12.Dress with the reserved pickling liquid and toasted fennel-seed oil.

Recipes, food styling & photography Will Bowman & Jane Lyons

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