The recipe you've asked for ~100 times
Plus an argument for savory fruit.
How’s it going? In last week’s Fresh Letter Menu, I mentioned that I planned to decamp to my parents’ house in the suburbs for the long weekend, which was exactly what I did. It was lovely, relaxing, and delicious. We spent time on the couch watching daytime TV, at the mall getting our steps in, and of course, outside grilling up a storm. On Sunday evening, my mom made swordfish steaks, my brother shucked corn, and I made a simple caprese salad (sans the basil—we forgot it at the store, but were still pleased with the result!). We sliced some baguette and called that dinner!
The meal came together in 10 minutes flat and though it could only be described as incredibly simple, it was also such a crowd pleaser. But isn’t that the joy of summer produce? Because it’s already so succulent and flavorful, it really doesn’t take much to make a show stopping meal out of it. Which brings me perfectly to today’s tip…
Please, I beg of you, don’t sleep on savory fruit dishes.
They’re sweet, they’re salty, and they’re a great way to make use of the summer’s bountiful produce offerings. And because they’re a little unexpected, they’re always sure to wow a crowd. I served a savory melon salad at last week’s micro dinner party (more on that below) and it was the star of our snack-y dinner. Plus, it’s so eye catching that it was far and away the most requested recipe from the meal. So please, again, make sure you’re giving your fruit the good ol’ main dish treatment! It deserves it too. And in case you needed further convincing…
I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite salt-y sweet fruit dishes from around the web and am also sharing my quick and easy recipe for Savory Melon and Cucumbers over Ricotta.
I have a bag of kinda stale pita chips hanging out in my cabinet that will certainly be making their way into this Pita Chip Dinner Salad with Stone Fruit and Chickpeas.
Serve some Pineapple Salsa alongside some simple grilled fish tacos at your next taco Tuesday.
Have you had cold cherry soup? I haven’t, but Quentin grew up eating it and I think this year might finally be the one he makes it for me!
And now, my couldn’t-be-easier recipe for Savory Melon and Cucumbers over Ricotta:
¼ large very ripe cantaloupe, peeled, deseeded, and cut into bite-sized pieces
2 Persian cucumbers or ½ English cucumber, cut into bite-sized ½” rounds or half moons
¼ tsp MSG (or sub salt), plus more to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper to taste (4-5 cracks usually does it)
½ tsp sea salt
1 cup whole milk ricotta
3-4 slices prosciutto, torn into bite-sized pieces (omit for veg)
1 Tbsp balsamic glaze
In a large bowl, toss together the cantaloupe, cucumbers, MSG (or salt), and pepper. Taste and adjust with additional MSG or salt—it’ll probably need a bit more, you want it to taste relatively salty.
Meanwhile, stir the ½ tsp sea salt into the ricotta, then dollop it onto a plate or a shallow bowl. Use the back of a large spoon to spread the ricotta evenly over the plate, then pile the melon and cucumber mixture on top.
Nestle the prosciutto pisces in among the melon and cucumber, then upon serving, drizzle the entire plate with the balsamic glaze and a few additional cracks of black pepper. Serve and enjoy!
Okay, I hope you’ll give this recipe and/or savory fruit in general a try (that is, if you’re not already on board!)…but if you’re looking for a more classic sweet treatment on your summer fruit, you can join us for July’s meal prep class on Sunday, July 17th! Abigail just perfected her Peach Crumble recipe (it’s breakfast appropriate, believe it or not!) and I’ll be serving up a picnic perfect pasta salad and the barbecue inspired sandwich of my dreams, among other things. Here’s the link to sign up! We absolutely cannot wait to cook with you.
Okay, until next week, I hope you have a lovely, well-fed week ahead.
With love and a tip of my chef’s hat,