March 22, 2013
Few things go better together than prosciutto and fruit, especially melon. Now, I know that it is yet to be “melon season,” but I just couldn’t help myself. The sweet and salty combination was calling my name, and I’m not talking about chocolate covered pretzels. Although, that does sound incredible right now. Hmmmm, maybe after we move. I don’t want to get too over ambitious just yet, especially when all of my kitchen “equipment” is starting to get packed away =(. Soon, all I will have left is a knife, a cutting board and a saucepan…which brings me to the melon and prosciutto salad. You don’t need much else other than a knife, a cutting board, and a saucepan. Yup, it’s just that easy. I know that I say “it’s just that easy” a lot, but this time it really is just that easy.
Can you tell I’m yearning for Spring? Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely love the snow and the cold. I love the idea of sitting by a fire, eating a warm bowl of soup and sipping on spiked hot cocoa (yes spiked hot cocoa), but I’m really starting to want those flavors that come with spring. There are signs of it everywhere. The breweries are starting to release their Spring beers, the calves are grazing the open spaces, and there are signs of new plant life popping up all over the place. It’s only natural to yearn for some Spring flavors.
Now, I know that melon isn’t really a “Spring” fruit/flavor. It usually comes with the Summer, but it still reminds me of warm weather, so I’m going to use it anyway. This salad embodies everything that I love about the Summer months. It’s cool and sweet and the perfect potluck dish. Yes folks, make this for your next picnic. It will be a crowd pleaser for sure. With that sweet, should always come the savory. I chose to use prosciutto and arugula as my savory components for this dish. They are both absolutely perfect with fruit.
We wouldn’t be entering the warmer months without an IPA! It’s time to store away your favorite stouts and porters and break out the refreshing taste that comes along with sipping on an IPA! I have become pretty obsessed with stouts this winter. I’m not sure why. I’m usually a “hoppier the better kind of girl,” but every time I went out or was browsing through the local beer mart, the stouts were just calling my name. Chocolate stouts and chili stouts were two of my favorites, and I’m sad to put them away, but it’s time for a change. What is so great about Spring, is that a lot of the breweries are putting out their lighter and more refreshing beers. It’s a nice little change over. Dogfish Head makes a great Spring brew with their Aprihop. It really is the perfect IPA with subtle hints of apricots. I hope you can see why I wanted to pair this dish with this beer. The reason I decided to make the salad in the first place is because of the Spring beers starting to be released. Zach and I were browsing the beer selection in our local beer mart yesterday and the idea arose. I got super excited! As a result, Aprihop meets melon and prosciutto salad =).The melon in this salad just elevates the sweetness in the beer. It’s also just a great beer to sip on all summer: at the beach, or at the lake, or wherever life may take you. So buy a case of it! That’s what we plan on doing =).
This weekend we are dedicating to packing. Fun fun, I know. I also plan on making a bunch of goodies this weekend to keep us sane. Fruits, veggies and snacks galore; I can’t wait to get started. Have a great weekend everyone!
- 2 cups balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups fresh cantaloupe, cut into ½ inch wedges
- 2 cups fresh honeydew, cut into ½ inch wedges
- 2 cups fresh watermelon, cut into ½ inch wedges
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 cup arugula, rinsed
- 8 ounces fresh feta cheese, crumbled
- 8-10 slice of prosciutto, thinly sliced
- salt and pepper
- In a small saucepan, heat the balsamic vinegar over medium-high. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and let simmer until it is reduced by half, about 25-30 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
- In a large bowl, gently toss the EVOO with the cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon, red onion and arugula with a pair of tongs.
- Top with the feta, prosciutto and lightly season with salt and pepper. Gently drizzle the balsamic reduction on top and serve immediately!
- If you are serving this at a later time. Prepare the salad minus the olive oil and balsamic drizzle. Refrigerate. When ready to serve, then toss with the olive oil and drizzle. Enjoy!