Working at the market during the summer months, one thing I notice is how the produce seems to change constantly. There’s something new coming or going every week. I think strawberries marked the beginning of that. Then there were peas, then cucumbers, and just when garlic scapes disappeared, heads of garlic arrived.
The arrival of new veggies seems to mark time, and time never slows down during the summer in upstate New York.
Last week, I almost began to feel like things might have been slowing. Cucumbers are still around, but not as plentiful; squash has been in abundance long enough, people are putting it in brownies, and tomatoes have been full on for a few weeks. It almost felt like things might be settling.
Then melon showed up.
The cantaloupe and snow leopard melons didn’t trickle in, like other early crops. They arrived at market in full force, filling 10 crates. After we unpacked it, I was worried the table might collaspe under its weight. For me, it was a huge reminder that summer is still in full swing, and the season still has plenty more variety to offer.
This week, let’s celebrate melon, and the fact that summer is still here with two recipes.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Crostini with Melon Salsa Crudo (from Michael Chiarello at foodnetwork.com)
- 1 long loaf country-style bread
- extra-virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup parmesan
- 1 small red onion, minced
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
- 1 ripe cantaloupe
- 2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley
- 12 slices prosciutto, sliced in 1/2 crosswise
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cut the loaf of bread in half crosswise, then cut each half lengthwise into 1-inch thick slices. Lay the slices in a single layer on baking sheets. Generously drizzle the top side of each slice with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the slices. Cook in the oven until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Set aside.
Marinate the onions in the vinegar for 5 minutes. While the onion is marinating, peel, seed and dice the melon and place in a bowl. Add the diced melon to the onions, season with salt and stir to blend together. Add the minced parsley and stir to combine.
Wrap the end of each crostini with a piece of prociutto. Arrange on a platter and spoon a tablespoon of melon salsa on each and serve. Serve remaining salsa on the side.
Melon Melody Smoothie (from Hannah Kilpatrick, adapted from “Lifestyles Recipe Book”)
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 cup cantaloupe
- 1 1/2 cups snow leopard melon
- 1 tablespoon supar
- 1 1/2 cups ice
Place ingredients in a blender in the order listed and blend until smooth.
*Also try adding watermelon, adjusting the cantaloupe and snow leopard melon quantities accordingly.