Nothing says the start of summer like the piles of round sweet melons in supermarkets and farm stand tables. Melons, including honeydew, watermelon, persian and casaba, are low calorie, affordable and offer a range of vitamins and minerals.
Waterrmelon is mostly water but its red flesh is a great source of cancer fighting lycopene. Cantaloupe is the nutritional rock star of the melon world. The sweet rich orange flesh is packed with beta carotene, potassium, vitamin A ( 80% of RDA) and vitamin C ( 60% of RDA). Since both of these vitamins are closely linked to smoother less wrinkled skin, cantaloupes should be part of beauty diet.
In recent years there have been outbreaks of illness linked to cantoloupe contaminated during storage. To reduce problems buy whole rather than cut-up melons and rinse throughly before cutting into them. Most melons including cantaloupe clocks in at about 30 calories /half cup and less than 8 grams of carbohydrate. Nice.
What sets melons apart from other fruits is that they are usually served in thir natural state without the addition of sugar and cream or butter. Unlike apples, berries or apples that are baked into pies and cakes, melons are used au natural for shakes and snacks. That being said one of my favorite summertime recipes is cold cantaloupe soup. I first had this at the Ritz Carlton in Naples Florida and I liked it so much I had it again every day of that trip. This recipe deliver a payload of calcium, protein and protein as well the antioxidants in coconut milk.
Cantaloupe Coconut Soup
Ingredients: 1/2 ripe cantaloupe, peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces, 1 15 oz can of lite coconut milk, 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, 2 teaspoons of brown sugar or 2 packs of Equal, fresh mint sprigs
Directions: Drop cubes of peeled, seeded cantaloupe into food processor and blend until almost smooth; add coconut milk, yogurt and sweetener of choice and process briefly to blend. Pour into little cups and top with a few fresh mint leaves.
I love to serve this makes as a cold soup with tea sandwiches for a real girly lunch. It also makes a wonderful gender-free breakfast smoothie.