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Cantaloupe and Meat


Anna Friedman Herlihy
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Hi all,

Trying to eat more fruit lately (rarely eat it, and trying to be more varied in my diet lately). However, not very many good options in the winter. Cantaloupe is a decent option, but I'm kind of bored with it at this point. I love melon paired with prosciutto (or even just some regular old ham cold cuts). Which got me thinking--what other convenience meats might be well paired to cantaloupe? I've done cantaloupe and chicken salad to good effect. But chicken salad is not something I usually buy from the store to have on hand, rather I make it from scratch after a roast chicken.

Or even any other salty/savory/sweet melon ideas? (Cheese? Cottage cheese comes to mind, but what about goat cheese or a hard cheese?)

Thanks for ideas!

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Some other coldcut options which are all good when thinly sliced and which I think would also pair well with the cantaloupe are:

Bundnerfleish or Bresaola: The first is from Switzerland/Germany/Austria and the latter from Italy. They are both a type of alpine air-dried and cured beef.

Westphalian Ham (Nuss Schinken): a slow-cured, smoked ham from Germany

I've had some interesting versions of cantaloupe gazpacho that were savory but I don't have my own recipe. Some of the ingredients were red onions, chiles, and cilantro.

(Have to admit though; the time of year that I eat cantaloupe is in August/September when it is ripe in many parts of the US and locally where I live. The fruits I go for now are citrus (grapefruit, mandarins and oranges), apples, pears and mangoes.)

And good luck incorporating more fruit into your diet; it's a good thing!

Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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Here's a recipe for melon and cured beef salad. (The Chicago Sun-Times called it one of their best ten recipes of 2006.) It calls for watermelon, but I'm sure cantaloupe would do, and bresaola as the beef certainly is an option.

Many years ago, at Wong's in Windsor, Ontario, I had an excellent beef and cantaloupe stir-fry, which I reproduced at home a couple of times; onions and green peppers were involved, iirc. Recipes are easily available for beef and bitter melon, but I haven't seen one for regular melon, and I'm not knowledgeable enough to know if one can be substituted for the other.

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^Thanks for that recipe; it sounds terriffic! It might be a more challenging combination, but I wonder if certain salamis might also work in a salad like that...

Judy Rodger's Zuni Cookbook also has an interesting twist on the melon/proscuitto pairing. She has a recipe for a salad in which melon is lightly marinated with some anise seeds and Sambuco and then draped with some proscuitto for serving.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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^Thanks for that recipe; it sounds terriffic!  It might be a more challenging combination, but I wonder if certain salamis might also work in a salad like that...

...

:smile: I just googled "cantaloupe" and "savory" and found an interesting salad with cantaloupe, black pepper, olivie oil, white wine vinegar, goat cheese and ... salami! Here it is: click

Here is also an interesting musing and results of experimentation with savory flavors with cantaloupe: click

Here are the three recipes that the writer offers:

Cantaloupe and Tomato Salad with Black Olives and Tarragon

Cantaloupe Salad with Prosciutto, Frisée, and Basil

Spaghetti with Cantaloupe and Hot Chilies

Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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Hey thanks guys, some interesting options.

I think I'm definitely going to have to try a variation on the spaghetti with cantaloupe and chilis (without the tomatoes, as I'm allergic), with the addition of some meat (pancetta?). Perhaps even tonight, as I have all the ingredients handy.

Also beef and cantaloupe stir-fry sounds great.

Don't know why I was thinking the melon had to stay uncooked....plenty of other fruits take well to cooking (recently have done pork with dried cherry sauce and mango-glazed ribs, and tomorrow I think will be game hens with tangerine sauce).

Keep the ideas coming!

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