Icy and gorgeously orange, this puree is flecked with the bright green of fresh-grated lime zest. When you get down to eating the soup, you pile in extras of red onion, green chile, and fresh basil. It’s an uncommon mix that always delights.
Track down a truly sweet cantaloupe for the soup. The commitment will pay back tenfold. A melon’s fragrance tells you everything you need to know: if it smells sweet, almost perfumed, you have a good one. If a melon has no scent, it’ll have no flavor.–Lynn Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift
Iced Cantaloupe Soup with Jalapeño and Basil Recipe
- Quick Glance
- Serves 2 to 4
- One 2 1/2-pound intensely sweet-smelling ripe cantaloupe
- 2 cups ice cubes
- Generous pinch of salt
- 4 or 5 grinds black pepper
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- Juice of 2 large limes (about 1/2 cup)
- Grated zest of 1/2 large lime
- 1 or 2 jalapeños, seeded and cut into fine dice
- 10 to 12 fresh basil leaves, coarse chopped
- 1/2 medium red onion, cut into 1/8-inch dice (optional)
- 1. Cut the melon into quarters. Scoop out its seeds and trim away the rind. Slice it into chunks and put them into a food processor. Add the ice, salt, pepper, sugar, and lime juice, and puree. Stir in the grated zest.
- 2. Place the jalapeños, basil, and onion in separate small serving bowls. Pour the puree into individual soup bowls or into a pitcher for further chilling.
- 3. To serve, pour the soup into bowls and pass the condiments. The basil and jalapeño are the essential finishes for the soup, while the onion is an attractive option.
Canteloupe Jalapeño Cooler
- When colleague Judy Graham gave this soup recipe a run-through, she went into overdrive and came up with this drink, perfect for brunch. Prepare the soup as described up to the point where it has been pureed. Before adding the lime zest, strain the soup. Then blend in the lime zest and 1 seeded and minced jalapeño. Divide the blend among 4 to 6 tall glasses filled with ice. Add a splash of vodka to each one, and stir. Serve garnished with wedges of lime or a sprig of basil.
Iced Cantaloupe Soup with Jalapeño and Basil Recipe © 2008 American Public Media. Photo © 2008 Mette Nielsen/Tony Kubart. All rights reserved.