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Grilled Cantaloupe Salsa

For years now my on air produce partner Guido has been raving about grilled cantaloupe. I never really jumped up and down at the thought, but I let him have his say. He liked it.

The other night I was grilling some boneless skinless breasts along with some fennel and other veggies. After everything was grilled the coals were still prime and I noticed that there were more than enough cantaloupes in my house. So figured well, I'll give it a shot.
I cut the cantaloupe into thick rings, removed the seeds and tossed them on the grill.
I turned them once. About 3-4 minutes on each side.

I had to try them after. I had to see Just exactly what Guido was raving about. After I tasted it I shrugged my shoulders and said to my wife" well there's something for everyone I guess"  and I left the cantaloupe there on a plate and we proceeded to eat our meal. I thought well the kids aren't going to eat it. Maybe I'll give it to the neighbors and they can try it  and then lie to me by saying 'oh this is excellent' thinking that maybe this is the latest new trend that they are supposed to pretend to like. Of course I didn't. I wrapped it up and put it in the refrigerator knowing after a day or two I'd just toss it in the compost heap and tell Guido that it was the greatest thing on earth.

The next night I was grilling some oysters and swordfish steaks. While I was grilling them I was thinking to myself 'what can accompany this gorgeous seafood?' I pondered a few thoughts, but nothing really sparked my fancy very much.  The light bulb above my head finally switched on and I remembered a cantaloupe salsa that I once had at a friends wedding 10 maybe 12 years back.. I thought again 15 years? 18, oh my God it was 18 years ago! How could it be 18 years ago? Food  wasn't "trendy" 18 years ago & I'm not that old! Am I? I am? Oh.
Okay now that I've had my 20 second mid life crisis I can try to remember the ingredients. After degaussing my brain I rescued the condemned grilled cantaloupe from the refrigerator, began peeling the rings with a knife and started cutting it into little chunks! It was starting to come together, I was remembering the ingredients like it was

yesterday. Wow who needs HGH? This is better than a self help tape. I was starting to feel younger and more vibrant! And then it
exploded in my mind and I was happy! I was dancing around the kitchen listening to Shakedown Street. When I was done I had grilled swordfish, oysters, a lovely tossed green salad with mache leaves and watercress, grapefruit chunks and a light olive oil vinaigrette dressing with sesame seeds on it and oh yes! Grilled Cantaloupe Salsa! Yes Guido my friend this is the greatest thing since prepackaged cut fruit on the produce stand!

So my friends out there in Produce Pair land I share with you a delightful recipe that changed my life for an evening. I can't guarantee that It will be as therapeutic for you as it was for me. Kind of like a "Wonder Years" experience. But I can guarantee that you will enjoy this delightful gift from the summer produce season. 

1 golden ripe cantaloupe cut into 1" thick rings (don't use the ends) grilled as described above, cooled and diced into small chunks.

One half of 1 red bell pepper chopped fine

2 jalapeno peppers seeded and chopped fine

½ small Walla Walla or other sweet onion diced

½ bunch finely chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon tequila or red wine vinegar

1tablespoon olive oil

1 lime - juiced

1 Marvel Stripe or other sweet heirloom tomato-dead ripe (soft)

cut up into either chunks or whatever mess it become in the process.

Salt & pepper to taste.

That's it. Combine the ingredients and chill for a few hours - overnight is even better.

Great with grilled fish or poultry.