You may be familiar with the combination of melon wrapped in prosciutto — a delicious combination of sweet and savory. However, you may not be familiar with the equally august combination of melon and port. I got to thinking (an often dangerous proposition) and wondered why not combine the two and riff off of my fondness for melon and American bacon? The peppery arugula is a perfect complement, and if you can't find a charentais melon (a chanterais looks like a cantaloupe and also has orange flesh but has rather deep greenish ribs running top to bottom), cantaloupe also works.
Makes 8 servings
1 charentais melon, rind removed and cut into 8 wedges
1 750 ml bottle ruby port
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon finely minced shallot
3 cups arugula
8 slices bacon, cooked and coarsely chopped
Place melon in a large zippered bag and add port. Marinate in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours. Warm 1/2 hour before serving.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, shallot and 1 tablespoon of the port used for marinating.
Arrange some arugula on a plate and set a melon wedge on top. Lightly drizzle melon and arugula with the vinaigrette then sprinkle with bacon.
Serve the port used for marinating on the side for sipping. It's really good.