melon sorbet and white cheese

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As I have some life to deal with today, I’m going to quickly leave you with’mmm… more of an idea than a recipe per se.  Three years ago during our fascinating trip to Istanbul, as any cool-faced tourists with telling peek-ish eyes, we sat at nearly every meal scratching our cameras and baffled – what’s up with the plate of melons at everyone’s table, and more importantly, where’s mine?

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Finally two days in and too many melon-less meals later I’ve had it up there.  I moved slightly sideways with my uncertain fingers and tapped the gentleman sitting next to us who was having a lovely conversation which probably should not have been interrupted (if it was you, late apologies… beautiful fedora by the way), and performed a little episode of what I called Universal Traveling Body Language.  Pointed at the melons → palms up and shrugged my shoulders → smile.  Hey, it works every time.  Turned out, HA!  Melon’s for cheese.

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It was a concept quite strange yet invigorating.  I mean figs and blue cheese with honey after meals, yes.  Melon and white cheese as an appetizer?  COOL!  I mean like literally “cool” because I can’t think of anything else more  refreshing to induce appetite when it’s like what-is-it-now… HELL-STORM TORCHING outside!  Wait wait, actually… I can.  I mean since it’s such as summery thing, why not SUMMER THE HELL out of it?  So here, a mid-summer mediterranean dream for you to combat a season that makes everything melt.  Well, better the sorbet than my face.

Taking my boy to the doc now.  Wish me luck ~

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The most important thing is to use fully ripen, juicy melons for this recipe.  Unripe melons, not only has flavourless/hard flesh, but will not yield much of juice from the center/seeds which we are going to make the syrup from.  This juice which usually get discarded, carries a lot of intense melon flavours.

Ingredients:

  • Melon sorbet:
    • 800 grams of ripen melon flesh (approx 1 ~ 1.5 melon)
    • 1/3 cup (78 ml) of melon juice (collected from the center and seeds)
    • 1/3 ~ 1/2 (100 grams) cup of sugar (depending on the sweetness of the melon)
    • 2 tbsp of lemon juice
  • Slices of mediterranean-style mild semi-soft feta such as:

Remove the skin of the melon and cut in half.  Scrape off the center fibers/seeds into a strainer with a bowl at the bottom to catch the juice.  Press on the fibers/seeds to extract as much juice as you can (adding a tbsp of water helps the thick liquid fall through the sieve).  You should have about 1/3 cup, but if not, just add water to make up to 1/3 cup.  Add the juice along with sugar and lemon juice to a small pot.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat until the sugar has melted.  Blend the melon flesh and the melon juice/syrup in a blender until extremely smooth, approx 1 ~ 2 min.  Chill the mixture in the fridge for a few hours, or until completely chilled through.

Turn the mixture into sorbet using your ice-cream machine according to manufacture’s instructions.  Freeze the sorbet inside a container in the freezer until harden.

Serve the sorbet with a slice of mediterranean semi-soft feta cheese.

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7 Comments

  • You know your fruit/cheese observation is not too strange (well to me anyway). Maybe a watermelon and mint sorbet with a tiny sprinkle of feta cheese? That is the first other melon combo I could think of when I read this post.
    This dessert is double cooling because I read that the affect of the melon in salad is to re hydrate you in hot climates. Anyway I bound to try this combo once in my life, so I might as well start now!

    • Georgia, the machine I used is a Chinese brand, Caple. It has its own compressor/cooling system but I used to have an ice cream maker that was practically an ice-bucket and a turner, and it works just the same.

  • Hi I really like your photography style. May I get to know if you have a specific shooting room for the dark-black layout? which camera/lens you use?

    Thank you very much and look forward to hear from you.

    Ms. Liang

  • Liang is right…I don’t know which I adore more: your writing or your photography. They are both outstanding. It makes my whole day to see a new email from you in my inbox. I have followed you for a long time now. Oh shit…doesn’t that sound creepy? Let me rephrase that: I have read your blog posts for a long time now. Better? Don’t call the FBI on me or anything now. I just read what you write, okay? I just wish I was as ambitious as you in the kitchen.

    And “the pups”? Yeah. I get it. I have two that really aren’t “pups” anymore. My “babies” are going to leave me soon, I know. So what the hell? I hand feed them cheesecake and any other damn thing they want. Live it up while you’re living, eh?

    Thank you for all of your absolutely fabulous writing. Utterly fabulous. You are high on the list of my all-time favourite writers and baby is that saying something. I’m just about the toughest audience you will never-ever meet. The critic from hell, I’m telling you straight up. To win my admiration, appreciation, and applause is nigh on impossible. It’s basically a tie between you and John Irving. I wish you had books available for sale. I’d buy every damn one. So hey…namaste Mandy. Have a great day.

    Steph

    • Stephanie, oh my, thank you so very much for your kind words which, no shit, makes my day :) I wishfully hope that you’ll keep finding smiles if not satisfaction from this blog. See you again soon.

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