- A pretty way to present melon and prosciutto
I couldn’t be a vegetarian, just because of that : prosciutto.
I’ve always loved it and had the chance to taste some of the most delicious in the world, from Parma, from Corsica, the famous patta negra from Spain…. It’s just divine.
The name prosciutto is Italian and regions have different variety and can take from 9 month to 2 years to cure and requires a lot of experience to make it at it’s best. The climate matters, if it’s hot the aging process will never begins and the meat will be spoiled, if it’s too dry the meat will be ruined too.
The process evolved and nowadays the meat is cleaned, salted and left that way for at least two months, meanwhile the meat is pressed gradually not to break the bone and eliminate excess of blood, then washed several times and hung in the dark.
It’s then, left to dry, the time will vary depending on the size of the leg and the local climate.
You can learn more about the aging process and find different recipe about the San Daniele checking this post, when I had the chance to be invited to a cooking class a few years ago http://www.marlenefoodstyling.com/2013/08/grana-padano-and-san-daniele-prosciutto-the-taste-of-tradition/
We are ending the melon season and it’ always a bit sad to know that we’ll have to wait till next year but it’s also a good news as other fruits are coming, we are starting the rhubarb soon, so there is always a lot of excitment to come. To celebrate the end of the season I prepared this melon-prosciutto salad presented a bit differentely.
There are different type of melon :
Benincasa (winter melon) : the mature melon is widely used in Asia and India as a cooking vegetable, when the immature one is used as a culinary fruit.
Citrullus : one similar to watermelon with inedible flesh but very valuable seeds which is a source of food in different countries like Africa.
The other one is the watermelon that we all know.
Cucumis : genus of culinary fruits in which most culinary melons are included, amongst them the most known, galia, cantaloupe canary and honeydrew. It also includes some less popular like the Korean melons, Japanese melons, Argos (grown in Greece), sugar melon….
Melon and prosciutto cups
– 1 melon (I bought 1 cantaloupe)
– 2 slices of prosciutto
– A few leaves of fresh basil
– Niçoice black olives
Cut the melon in half, take off the seeds with a teaspoon, make sure that both parts are stable, if not, cut the extremity of each part.
Using a Parisian spoon make some balls with all the flesh, keep the juice to drink it or to make a dressing adding olive oil, salt and pepper to it. When the balls are done, put them back in the rind add some pieces of the prosciutto, olives, basil and either a dressing and black pepper that oges so well with melon.