Cantaloupe the New Magical Fruit

Submitted by Laura Feldhacker & Jonnisha McCleod, ExtensionCorps Members

Check out this recipe for a final “friends and family summer grill-out” with these fresh fruit and veggie kabobs made with grilled cantaloupe, why not?! Okay, maybe the better question is, why would I? Let’s take a quick look at why adding cantaloupe to your summer kabobs is worth your friends bewildered looks and raised eye brows.

First, being the most consumed melon in the U.S. cantaloupe has some stature. Mostly seen in fruit cups or as a vehicle for cottage cheese or tuna salad, we decided this fruit needed some revamping. Cantaloupe, also known as muskmelon, has natural sugars that will caramelize when introduced to heat. One word of caution, since cantaloupe is already a semi-soft fruit, containing a good amount of water, it can start to “mush” after a few minutes of high heat so watch the length of time you cook it. Grilling is a great way to cook this delicious fruit. Giving it some good grill marks is just enough time you need to bring out its natural sweetness.

If you are looking for more of a reason than that, cantaloupe is packed with lots of great essential nutrients, not only fiber and carbohydrates but vitamins like A, B, E and K. It also contains minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and zinc. These vitamins and minerals are a protective agent for your body against some cancers, proper cell function and healthy eyes, skin and nails. Cantaloupe also contains phytochemicals and antioxidants like Zea-xanthin that help protect your skin and eyes from the harmful effects of UV rays.

Maybe beans have some competition for the title “magical fruit”, although that never made sense to me since beans aren’t a fruit and they aren’t really magical, they’re more…musical. Either way this melon will get the “ball” rolling at your next summers-end bash.

Sweet n’ Tangy Kabobs

Honey Glaze: 
1 T. of lime juice
1 T. of lemon juice
3 T. of honey
¼ cup of butter, melted

Fruits & Vegetables:
1 green pepper, slice
1 zucchini, slice
½ of cantaloupe, chop

1. Mix all of the glaze ingredients together in a small mixing bowl until smooth.
2. Put the fruits and vegetables in the glaze and let them soak for 5 minutes.
3. Place the fruits and vegetables on a skewer.
4. Place them on the grill and let them grill for approximately 5 minutes. 

Sweet n' Tangy Kabobs Plated

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