Monday, August 10, 2009

It's melon season!

It's the middle of August, when melon season in the Northeast means the best of the summer.  I thought I'd write about different applications for melons other than just cut into wedges. Recently, you might have noticed restaurants doing more than just fruit salad and prosciutto-wrapped melon; here's a simple recipe that would make for an excellent addition to an end-of-the-summer BBQ.

When I worked in the Hamptons, melon soup became a weekly staple at the beach bar. It was really easy and very refreshing.
Recipe: Melon Soup
Melon of choice (honey dew, cantaloupe, watermelon)
Simple Syrup (1/2 sugar 1/2 water)
Few Basil Sprigs
Small rosemary sprig
Few Mint Sprigs
White Balsamic
1. On stove, put one part sugar and one part water in a pot. Add basil, rosemary, and mint. Bring to boil. Turn off and let steep for about 20 min. Chill down until cold.
2. Cut melon into small chunks (take off rind and scoop out seeds). Place in blender, add a small amount of simple syrup, blend until smooth.
3. Season with simple syrup (this will depend on how sweet the melon is), balsamic, and salt.

Enjoy on a hot summer day. Add your favorite liquor to it to make a refreshing adult beverage.

I've also read about watermelon BLTs, which sound refreshing and delicious; a savory side to the ever-popular BBQ dessert. At the restaurant where I work now, we do a melon and mozzarella salad with avocado and poblano puree. There are many recipes out there to try. In any case, enjoy your melon now, because it will soon be out of season again.
If you have the chance to grow your own melon next summer I suggest it. They take up a lot of space, but you will be surely surprised when you taste them. The most delicious melons I have tasted were from the garden.

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