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Summertime will soon be over and there’s one thing I’m really going to miss, and that’s cantaloupe!
Made up of 90 percent water, the best cantaloupes in the U.S. can be found between June and August.
Now is the time to load up on these cool, refreshing, vitamin-packed fruits.
Head to the kitchen to stir up some creative, culinary fun and good taste for the whole family to enjoy.
Cantaloupe Safety First!
But before you start on your cantaloupe creative concoctions let’s talk about safety.
The netted skin of a cantaloupe, also known as its rind, can be contaminated with bacteria, like salmonella.
It’s important to scrub and thoroughly wash it before cutting and consuming.
There are a lot of ways to cut a cantaloupe.
Cut the top and bottom ends off and then sit it squarely on a cutting board. Following the shape of the fruit, cut off the rind.
Then slice through the center to cut it in half. Scoop out the seeds and the rest is up to you.
At this point you can cut it into long slices or cubes.
Are You a Cantaloupe Creative?
Cantaloupe is delicious all by itself and it’s versatile.
Let your imagination run wild!
Add cantaloupe cubes to pasta or salad; grill it with shrimp or chicken on skewers; incorporate it into salsa; or puree it with other fruits and vegetables like cucumbers to make a cold soup.
Cantaloupe Cuisine Crushes It!
Or you could make one of my favorite desserts with it: Cantaloupe and Yogurt Parfait.
In French, the word parfait means “perfect” and this delectable dessert certainly is.
Chunks of cantaloupe are layered in a parfait glass with gingered yogurt and buttery, cinnamon and vanilla toasted graham cracker crumbles.
What’s not to like?
Enjoy this end of summer and seasonal treat to cool your tastebuds while dreaming about the cooler weather that’s sure to come.
This is an elegant, yet easy dessert. It's the perfect sweet and cool ending to a summer supper.
12 graham crackers, crumbled
1 cup brown sugar packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups plain Greek-style yogurt
2 tablespoons orange juice
3 teaspoons candied ginger, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups seeded, diced cantaloupe
a bit of extra butter for buttering a large sheet pan
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly butter a large sheet pan.
in a small bowl, mix together crumbled graham crackers, brown sugar, and cinnamon, and kosher salt.
Add vanilla to melted butter. Stir to combine.
Pour butter mixture into graham cracker mixture. Stir to combine.
Spread graham cracker mixture evenly on buttered pan.
Bake graham cracker mixture for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven. The graham cracker mixture will look like it's melted together. Run a heat-resistant spatula up and down the length of the sheet tray several times. As you do this, the graham cracker mixture will gather together.
Return to the oven for an additional 5 minutes.
Once it’s finished the additional 5-minute bake, set it aside to cool until ready to assemble parfait.
In a small bowl combine the yogurt, orange juice and candied ginger.
Stir until mixed through.
In each of 4 parfait glasses, layer 2 tablespoons of the cantaloupe, followed by 2 tablespoons of the yogurt, followed by 2 tablespoons of the yogurt mixture.
Repeat layers until the yogurt and fruit has been evenly distributed among the 4 parfait glasses.
Serve immediately or refrigerate for service later.
If assembling for later service, add the sprinkle of graham cracker crumbles on top of the parfait just before serving.
The graham cracker mixture makes more than what’s needed for this recipe. Reserve the leftover crumbles. They can be frozen.)
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