Cantaloupe anyone? Don’t you just love that word? Buying seasonal produce is a great way of saving money and it forces you to be more creative with meal planning too, which, as anyone who has to prepare daily meals for their family can sympathise with. At the moment, Rock Melons are in season, also known as Spanspek in South Africa or Cantaloupe in America.
The bright orange juicy flesh is refreshingly cool and works well on it’s own as a breakfast ingredient (I love blitzing it into my morning smoothie) or fruit treat; chopped up, I add it to lunch boxes mixed with other fruit on mini kebab sticks or use it in a fresh salad. Now I hear some of you saying that fruit in a salad simply isn’t your thing, and I can understand, but honestly? Try this. My husband had two helpings the other night and still wanted more so I made a whole extra bowl full!
I’d heard that rock melon and prosciutto complement each other really well so I had to give it a go. Please believe me, this is one of the tastiest and easiest salads I’ve come up with in a long time. I added a little pasta to bulk it up as this was our main meal of the day and the combination of lemon, white wine vinegar and olive oil dressing seems simple on it’s own but bursts with flavour when tossed through the salad. The earthiness of the prosciutto, combined with the clean juicy softness of the melon, the crunch of the red onion and crispy luminescent green of the kale – it’s even beautiful to look at.
250 g pasta shapes
½ rock melon
½ bag baby kale leaves (about 3 handfuls)
100 g prosciutto
fresh parmesan cheese shavings
½ red onion
bunch fresh mint leaves (optional)
1 Tsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Cook the pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside to cool.
- Dice the rock melon into 2 cm chunks and add to the washed kale leaves in a large salad bowl.
- Slice the prosciutto. Thinly slice the onion. Add both to the salad along with the mint leaves (tear them if they are quite big).
- Combine the white wine vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil in a jar with a lid and shake until well mixed or beat in a small bowl.
- Add the cooled pasta to the salad.
- Using a vegetable peeler, slice thin slivers of fresh parmesan cheese and sprinkle over the salad.
- Pour over the dressing, add a little salt and pepper and gently toss to coat the salad.
- Serve immediately.