Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer Pleaser: Benton's Smoky Mountain Country Proscuitto Wrapped Athena Cantaloupe Bites




What a perfect sweet, salty, and smoky southern summer snack! Can I fit any more "S" words?  Savory, scrumptious, succulent and salivous perhaps? Looking for a perfect brightly colored offering to bring to your friend's 4th of July celebration?  You must give this dish a try.  It is so simple and satisfying. :)

New Gourmet Southern Food Discovery:  Benton's Ham Items.   I couldn't be more happy.  This past weekend I was in Knoxville, TN visiting family and my aunt graciously sent me home with a generous sampling of Benton's products including sausage, ham, bacon, and prosciutto.  My first experiment with my new Benton's items was prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe.  I have had prosciutto wrapped cantaloupe, honey dew, and strawberries before but a good sweet cantaloupe is my favorite.  That said, my favorite cantaloupe is Athena.  They are particularly sweet and have a ribbed appearance around  them, instead of the usual roundness. 

This prosciutto is smoky unlike it's Italian mother and a bit more salty.  It still has that perfect tenderness though. 

BENTON'S PROSCIUTTO WRAPPED ATHENA CANTALOUPE

1 cantaloupe (de-seeded and de-rined) cut into 1/5 inch cubes
1 package prosciutto (It is hard to judge size on this.  If you are using other prosciutto, make sure you have at least 6-8 good thin slices) torn into 2-3 inch pieces

Wrap prosciutto around the melon pieces, if you prefer more of the meat, you may wrap the meat around completely, we decided we liked smaller pieces of the prosciutto and generally just sat a nice sized piece on top of each melon cube and secured it with a toothpick.  The entire plate was devoured by 4 people as an appetizer to dinner.  We just couldn't help ourselves.  I think you could probably depend on it being good for 6-10 people depending though. 

Athena Hybrid Cantaloupe

Benton's is a Tennessee ham operation that is quickly growing to be known to produce wonderful gourmet delicacies. 


Please visit their website to learn more and find where you can procure it.  I loved learned about how long they cure them.  Very interesting read. 
http://bentonscountryhams2.com/



2 comments:

  1. Oh you got to love Benton's bacon and ham! The perfectly smoked meats!!! I don't really like to eat the bacon but it is awesome to cook with!!!!

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  2. Benton's is the best! They also smoke cocoa for high end chocolate company Olive & Sinclair, that stuff is "to die for".

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