Monday, June 6, 2011

Prosciutto-Wrapped Melon with Baby Greens and Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette

Prosciutto-wrapped fresh melon has got to be one of my favorite summer-time treats of all time.  When I was in Italy it was melon season and it seemed every trattoria and cafe served this simple dish.  I think I must have ordered it for every meal!

It used to be difficult to find prosciutto ham, but not any more.  It seems like nearly every grocery store carries it now.  The salty silky ham is sliced so this you can actually see through it!  Wrapped around melon it becomes transcendent,  the saltiness of the ham balancing perfectly with the sweetness of the melon.  Here I serve it atop a bed of baby greens dressed in a sweet honey balsamic vinaigrette with lots of freshly cracked black pepper. The honey in the dressing really brings out the natural sweetness of the melon.

I  buy the melon already cubed in the produce section of my grocery store...saves a lot of time (and I can get a variety of different melons without having massive amounts of leftover melon).

I like to serve this with a slice of grilled ciabatta bread brushed with olive oil and a little garlic. YUM.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Melon with Baby Greens and Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette
serves 4

4oz. thinly sliced prosciutto ham
Melon cubes (cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon)

1/2 lb mixed baby greens (I like spinach radicchio, arugula and endive)
3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp honey
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 -2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
pinch of salt
1/2 cup olive oil

Cut prosciutto slices in half lengthwise and wrap around 1-inch cubes of your favorite melon (I like to use a mix of melon from the prepared section of the produce dept.).

In a medium-sized bowl combine balsamic vinegar, honey, mustard, pepper, salt and olive oil.  Whisk until dressing emulsifies and thickens.  Place baby greens in a large bowl, add dressing and toss to coat leaves.  Immediately plate salad on chilled plates and top with prosciutto-wrapped melon.  Enjoy!

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