Monday, August 2, 2010

Fruit Salad with Cayenne-Lemon-Mint Syrup

Nothing says summertime like a fruit salad.

I'm not talking about the canned, mushy fruit salad of winter. I'm also not talking about the nasty green jello salad that has some sort of vegetable or "dairy" product in it either.


Here's what I'm talking about; juicy melons, plump, sun-ripened berries, and the first pretty pears of the season, mixed with just the right amount of sweet.

And for kicks, a little heat. (But not too much!)

Trust me. Would I steer you wrong?

If I were in a driver's seat, probably, but not when it comes to food.

It's just too important.

~The Players~
1 large cantaloupe, cubed
1 large honeydew melon, cubed
2 cups fresh blueberries
2 cups quartered fresh strawberries
2 medium pears, cubed
1 cup fresh blackberries
1 Tb. fresh mint, chopped
1/8 t. ground pepper

~The Supporting Cast~
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
juice from 1 large lemon or 2 small lemons
3 Tb. honey
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
1/4 cup fresh mint
1 Tb. lemon zest

Combine sugar, water, lemon juice, honey, and cayenne pepper in a small saucepan. Bring to boil; cook for 3 minutes or until mixture is slightly thickened. Remove from heat; stir in mint and zest and let stand for 30 minutes. Strain mixture through cheesecloth; discard solids.

Combine fruit, 1 Tb. chopped mint and ground pepper in a large bowl. Add syrup and toss until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

We found small, wild blackberries in the woods behind our house, but couldn't seem to get them to add up in the bowl.

They added up nicely in our tummy's, but not the bowl.

So, I added marionberries. Pineapple would be good too, as would watermelon. Oh, and we can't forget grapes! And.....

The combinations are limitless, especially since fruit is in season!!!!


No comments: