Recipe by The Produce Pack
Cantaloupes, once ripe, really do not last very long. They’ll go from perfectly sweet and succulent to slimy in a few days, and slimy is generally not a good thing when it comes to food.
Pickling is one of the easiest ways to preserve fruits and vegetables. It’s also a great way to infuse additional flavors into whatever it is that you’re pickling. In this case, I added basil and red pepper flakes as additional flavoring agents, as I find that these both go really well with cantaloupe (inspired by Italian antipasti).
Pickling can also be 100% Whole30 compliant, so long as there is no sugar added. Be sure to check your vinegar labels; some companies add sugar after the double-ferment process to make vinegar, and this would result in an uncompliant pickle.
TMF Zero Waste Kitchen Tip
Pickling is a straightforward approach to achieving a zero-waste kitchen. When you have small amounts of something leftover, like extra chopped onions or garlic, place them in a mason jar, add a pinch of sugar and a bit of salt, cover with vinegar, and toss it in the fridge. Once you realize a fruit or vegetable will not be used, add it to the mason jar with extra pickling juice and spices. Within a couple of days, your pickled food should be ready to use. You can use a variety of fruits, vegetables, vinegar, herbs, or spices. You do not need to make a big production of pickling! Pickled foods are a handy condiment to have on hand to liven up anything from salads and sandwiches to quinoa bowls and more.
If you'd like to learn more about pickling, fermentation, and the differences between them, read Pickling 101: The Ultimate Guide to Everything Pickled!
Don't forget to check out TMF's Resource Section for more Zero-Waste Tips. You can also sign up for a Free Produce Storage Guide from The Produce Pack when you click on the Recipe Post below!
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Sweet and Sour Pickled Cantaloupe
- ½ Cantaloupe seeds removed
- ½ cup Champagne Vinegar
- 2 tablespoon Kosher Salt
- ½ teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
- 4 large Basil Leaves
- Create cantaloupe balls by using a melon baller. Add melon balls to a 1 quart mason jar. Add the juice to a saucepan.
- Add the champagne vinegar to the saucepan, along with the kosher salt and red pepper flakes. Bring the mixture to a boil while stirring to dissolve the salt. Remove from heat once the mixture begins to boil.
- Pour vinegar mixture over the melon balls. Add the basil leaves.
- Add water to the jar to cover the melon balls. Make sure the cantaloupe is completely submerged.
- Place the jar in the refrigerator and wait for a minimum of 2 days before eating.
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