Melon and Bacon Salad

Two weeks of particularly fresh, flavourful food in the Constantly Cooking kitchen are drawing to a close. I had so much fun with the August Farmers’ Feast Challenge, dreaming up great new dishes thanks to a bursting bushel basket of produce from the Ottawa Farmers’ Market.  The inspiration for this salad was the classic cantaloupe-prosciutto combination that is so delicious and popular. I love the contrasting colours of the melon, bacon and mint; the simple dressing really helps the ingredients’ naturally yummy flavours shine through. While I love the vibrant green colour of the canary melon from Rochon Garden used in this version, orange-hued cantaloupe would work nicely also. This would be a great brunch dish or an appetizer for a summery meal.

Cool, juicy melon and warm, crisp bacon are a perfect pairing. The lemony vinaigrette and mint complement both of the salad's main components.

Cool, juicy melon and warm, crisp bacon are a perfect pairing. The lemony vinaigrette and mint complement both of the salad’s main components.

 

Ingredients

For the salad:

  • 1 small melon (canary or honeydew)
  • 8 pieces bacon, cooked and cut into 2 inch (5 cm) pieces
  • ¼ cup mint leaves, coarsely chopped

For the dressing:

  • ¼ cup (60 mL) olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) honey
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 mL) Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground pepper

Method

  • Cook the bacon (I like to bake mine on a parchment-lined sheet at 375F for about 20 minutes, flipping halfway through).
  • While bacon is cooking, cut the melon in half lengthwise. Remove and discard seeds; cut melon into 1.5 inch (3.75 cm) wedges and cut rind off each wedge. Slice the melon flesh into large cubes (approximately 5 inches / 3.75 cm square) and put these in a serving bowl.
  • Put the olive oil, honey, lemon juice, Dijon and a few grinds of pepper in a small jar with a tight lid. Cover the jar and shake until dressing is well blended.
  • Once bacon is crispy, drain it briefly on a paper-towel lined plate and then coarsely chop it into 1 inch (2.5 cm) pieces.
  • Drizzle about two-thirds the dressing over the melon cubes and gently toss to combine. Add more dressing if needed – you want the melon well coated but not drowned.
  • Sprinkle bacon pieces and mint over the melon; toss again and serve immediately.

Serves 4 – 6.

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About Paula Roy

Welcome to my kitchen! I play with words and with food. I love simple dishes prepared with passion and am always seeking to find new methods to make food as fun and flavourful as possible. I'm also an enthusiastic explorer of faraway lands and cuisines.
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One Response to Melon and Bacon Salad

  1. A. Franklin says:

    Bacon on a salad?
    Sold.

    A Challenge to #Ottawa Foodies and Food Bloggers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2ZI3oKUCI0

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