You might be familiar with the popular Italian appetizer, cantaloupe wrapped in prosciutto. I remember how wonderful the sweetness of the cantaloupe tasted as it mixed in my mouth with the salty complex flavors of the prosciutto. I wanted to recreate that popular flavor combination, but in a vegan form. I came up with this refreshing Chilled Melon Soup with Crispy Vegan Bacon. You need only 4 ingredients and 10 minutes of prep time to make this recipe. The refrigerator will do the rest of the work. It really hits the spot on a hot summer day.
Ingredients You'll Need
- Ripe summer cantaloupe- It's important that your cantaloupe is ripe and sweet for this soup to taste best. You can tell if a cantaloupe is ripe even before cutting it open. You should be able to smell the cantaloupe's aroma and sweetness when lifting it to your nose.
- Sherry Vinegar- I love sherry vinegar in all my summer gazpachos and chilled soups. But if you don't have sherry vinegar, fresh lemon juice is a delicious substitute.
- Basil or Mint- Either one of these herbs adds both a beautiful pop of color as well as a burst of fresh flavor to the soup.
- Vegan Bacon- My favorite vegan bacon is made by a company called Sweet Earth. It has all the delicious smoky saltiness that you crave from regular bacon. I highly recommend you give it a try. I cook it until it becomes nice and crispy so the texture stands out in the soup.
- Coarse Salt and White Pepper- I like to season the soup with a little salt and pepper. White pepper is a bit more mild and looks prettier in the soup. But if you don't have white pepper you can certainly use black. The salt and pepper together will balance out the sweetness of the melon and pair nicely with the vegan bacon.
How to Serve Chilled Melon Soup
You'll need to make and then refrigerate this soup for at least an hour but ideally 2 hours or more. It's best served right from the refrigerator into a chilled bowl. Enjoy as a light lunch or appetizer on a warm day when you need something refreshing that doesn't require a lot of work. I also love to serve it in tiny shot glasses when I am entertaining a larger group. The glasses look so adorable garnished with the vegan bacon and sprigs of mint or basil.
If you enjoyed this recipe you may also like this Chilled Cucumber Yogurt Soup.
Chilled Melon Soup with Vegan Bacon
- 1 cantaloupe ripe and seeds removed
- 2 teaspoon sherry vinegar or lemon juice
- 4 strips Sweet Earth Vegan Bacon
- fresh mint or basil
- pinch coarse salt
- pinch freshly ground white pepper
- Slice the cantaloupe then carefully remove the melon from the skin and cut into smaller chunks.
- Add melon to blender with the vinegar or lemon juice, salt and pepper.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour, but ideally 2 hours or up to 24 hrs.
- Before serving, cook the vegan bacon as instructed on package. Allow to cool and then break up into pieces.
- Remove soup from fridge and give it few stirs with a large spoon (the fiber will separate from the liquid while in the fridge). Then pour into chilled bowls and generously sprinkle on the vegan bacon.
- Garnish with mint or basil. Serve immediately.