Cantaloupe - the summer melon with the intricate latticework rind, usually perfectly round, gives off the defining smell of the grocery store produce section. A fruit I truly dislike.
When my CSA newsletter arrived last Tuesday with the list of what would be in the box the next day, about halfway down the list there was "Watermelon OR Cantaloupe." I was hoping for watermelon. I got cantaloupe.
Ever the optimist, I tried to get excited. My memories of cantaloupe come from breakfast at my grandparents house. Momo would cut thick slices of cantaloupe and then partially-cut perfect cubes of melon in each slice. She and Popo would eat them with salt and pepper. The grandchildren were always offered melon, and I remember tasting it, but choosing the ever-comforting flavor of a banana instead.
One morning last week I decided to find out if my taste buds had changed. After all, I disliked tomatoes as a kid and now they're my favorite summer food. I cut a thick slice of melon, added some salt and pepper, and carved out a bite with my spoon.
Better than I remembered - both sweet and salty. But not for me. At least, not like this. I had almost an entire melon left and needed to find a use for it.
That afternoon, I blended the easiest milkshake I've ever made:
Vanilla ice cream
Blend until desired consistency is reached.
It was delicious. I think I liked it because the melon was so juicy I needed more ice cream than melon to get that good milkshake consistency.
And then I served it like a refreshing afternoon cocktail: