Tag Archives: light recipe

Melon, Prosciutto and Mint

Melon, Prosciutto and Mint

I love summer in Southern Oregon…  Fresh picked produce from our garden, local farmer’s markets and hot summer days.  Summer in my opinion, is three months of pure bliss.  Late this afternoon on my way home from work I decided to stop by my favorite food cooperative to check out the fresh produce.  While there, I picked up some organic boneless skinless chicken thighs, a bomber of a local micro brew and a sweet smelling cantaloupe for our dinner tonight.  And as a minor clarification, the bomber was for me :).

Fresh Mint.  The leaves have such a delicious aroma.  I snagged about 8 sprigs of it for my sliced Melon, Prosciutto and Mint.

Let me tell you a little tidbit of information about growing fresh mint.  What you need to know about mint is that you should never, ever, ever grow it outside of a pot or an enclosed space.  Why?  Because this pretty little unsuspecting plant, if not kept in check, will try to take over your yard.  Once established, mint is difficult to eradicate without the use of chemicals or herbicides.  If you have mint growing in your yard, you probably know what I am talking about…  I learned the hard way.  I now keep my mint in its very own pot.

Melon, Prosciutto and Mint is a wonderful little side dish on a hot summer day.  The sweetness of the melon, the saltiness of the prosciutto and the herbaceous aroma of the mint are a wonderful trio.  Not to mention, it’s delicious and easy to make.  Enjoy!  Tessa

Ingredients:

  • 1 cantaloupe melon
  • 4 oz. thin sliced prosciutto
  • 8 – 10 springs of mint

Begin by peeling, seeding and slicing your melon into 8 to 10 slices.  Wrap thin slices of prosciutto around the melon.  Garnish with sprigs of mint.  Place on platter and serve.

Note:  you can use honeydew melon or other sweet melon if you can’t find cantaloupe.

Bok Choy Shiitake Mushroom Soup

Bok Choy Shiitake Mushroom Soup

With all the warm weather we have been having here in Southern Oregon, my little garden is going nuts…  Just a few weeks ago, I planted some bok choy starts and in no time I am completely inundated with bok choy.  As I would say, I have “enough to choke a goat”.  The problem is that there are just the two of us in the home and what do we do when all the heads of bok choy need to be harvested at the same time?  Well, first of all, share with friends, family and neighbors.  Second, share with coworkers.  Third, I start cooking everything I possibly can with bok choy!

For those who do not know what bok choy is, this is what it looks like.  Bok choy is also known as Chinese cabbage. It has a wonderful delicate flavor and goes great in stir-fries, soups and main dishes.  I love it because it is easy to grow and it’s super low in calories.  It has crunchy white stalks and beautifully flavored green leaves.

While picking bok choy in my garden this afternoon, I took my camera with me to photograph some of the beautiful plants in my yard.  This is a photo of a red Japanese maple tree.  We have a several Japanese maples planted around our koi pond.  They are without a doubt, my favorite specie of deciduous tree.

Next to my kitchen window I have an arbor covered in tiny pink roses.  I believe they are called “Cecile Brunner”.  You would not know it from the photo but the plant is twenty feet tall and covered with hundreds of blooms!  It’s just gorgeous!

On the back patio I have a big pot of Sweet William flowers.  Sweet William are adorable little biennials that are fragrant and look wonderful cut and placed in vases.  I like the bright pink color and the jagged edges on the petals.

After photographing plants in my yard, I harvested a few heads of bok choy.  One of the heads of bok choy was going straight into a light and tasty Bok Choy Shiitake Mushroom Soup for my lunch.  The other head of bok choy that I picked will be used in a dish for tomorrow’s dinner.

Next time you have an abundance of bok choy, be sure to try my Bok Choy Shiitake Mushroom Soup.  It’s light, flavorful and really easy to make.  Makes 4 servings.  Enjoy!  Tessa

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups bok choy (chopped)
  • 2 cups shiitake mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1 cup onion (chopped)
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 2 Tbs low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp. Szechuan pepper
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 6-8 drops sesame oil (use sparingly)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • fresh chopped chives for garnish

In a large pan cook onion and canola oil on medium low.  Stir constantly until onion is opaque.  Add remaining ingredients except sesame oil, salt and pepper.  Cook until shiitakes are tender, about 15 minutes.  Add sesame oil, salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with fresh chopped chives.