Melon Soup and Red Wine Granita
This distinctive recipe, brought to us by chef Raymond Blanc, owner of Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons in Oxfordshire, England, offers an elegant and delicious way to put fresh cantaloupe to good use. Look for a cantaloupe with the least amount of green on its net-patterned shell. When you compare two melons, the juicier one will be heavier and its seeds will rattle audibly when the melon is shaken. In preparing the granita, Raymond uses fructose rather than sugar; the flavor is identical, but fructose contains about half the calories.
Peel melon, and finely chop the skin. Slice the melon in half, removing seeds and filament. Place skin, seeds, and filament into a saucepan. Add 2 cups water and fructose or sugar. Bring mixture to a boil, skimming the foam off the surface, and simmer for 15 minutes.
Cut the melon flesh into thin slices, and place in a large bowl; set aside. Pour seed mixture through a sieve lined with cheesecloth placed over the melon slices, and set aside to cool. When cool, add lime juice and mint. Spoon red-wine granita over the top, and serve immediately.