Nearly five years ago, my husband and I went on a cruise for our honeymoon. Cruises are notoriously famous for an overabundance of food, and I was more than happy to overindulge. One of my favorite cruise treats was the prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe that was served at nearly every buffet. I loved the sweet and savory flavor profile, as well as the textural contrast. I’d never had cantaloupe served that way before.
This caprese recipe showcases the same play on flavors as the prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe that I enjoyed on the cruise. It’s a nice twist on the traditional caprese salad, and I think you’ll agree that the sweet melon is particularly good with the balsamic reduction.
Cantaloupe Caprese (serves 2 as a main course; 4 as a salad course)
What you need:
- 1/3 cup good balsamic vinegar
- 2 or 3 of the best tomatoes you can find, cut into wedges
- Half a cantaloupe, seeded, peeled and cut into slices about the size of your tomato wedges
- Half a large ball (or more if you’re feeling frisky) of hand-pulled mozzarella, generously sliced
- A handful of basil leaves, cut into chiffonade
- A drizzle of good olive oil
- Coarse salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
How you do it:
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring balsamic vinegar to a slow boil and allow to reduce by half; about 5-7 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Meanwhile, toss tomatoes, cantaloupe and mozzarella together on a large serving platter. Top with basil chiffonade, a drizzle of olive oil, a hefty pinch of coarse salt, a few grinds of freshly cracked pepper and a generous drizzle of balsamic reduction (use as much as you like — I ended up using a good 3 or 4 spoonfuls).
- Serve with crusty bread.