Soupe de Melon au Champagne (Chilled Melon and Champagne Soup)

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What’s more elegant than starting a dinner with a chilled Champagne soup? This cold soup is a perfect summer appetizer.

Difficulty: Easy

Hands-on: 10 minutesTotal: 2 hours 10 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 2 charentais melons (or 1 American cantaloupe), about 2 lbs.
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh mint, minced, and 8 mint leaves
  • ½ cup Champagne or sparkling wine
  • 4 thin slices Serrano ham, cut in ½"-wide strips
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper

Directions

  • Cut the melon in two, take out the seeds, and spoon out the flesh. Make a dozen melon balls by using a teaspoon: They should look like ice cream balls, but smaller. Reserve the melon balls, and put in the refrigerator. Spoon out the rest of the flesh into a large bowl.
  • In a blender, pour the melon flesh, the cloves, the minced mint, and the Champagne, and process until very smooth. Place immediately in the refrigerator. If you want to serve the soup in a couple of hours, pour it in a container and leave in the freezer for an hour, then move it to the refrigerator for the last hour.
  • Serve the soup in individual bowls or glasses. First ladle in the soup, then the melon balls, then the ham. Add mint leaves to the top.