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A soup that redeems all of Martha Stewart's sins

By Justin Fox

Dylan has lamented the lack of food-related content in Ezra's absence. So, after making it for dinner last night and being reminded of its amazing late-summer goodness, I need to talk about melon soup. I learned the recipe sometime in the late 1990s from an issue of Martha Stewart Living; I don't have the original anymore, but no matter. Here's what you do:

1. Buy a melon, preferably a locally grown one (more flavorful than the ones shipped from afar). I'm not sure exactly what kind of melon I used yesterday. The flesh seemed cantaloupish, but the exterior didn't. Honeydew and other similar sorts will also do. Watermelon won't.

2. Put the melon on the kitchen counter and forget about it. Notice a few days later that liquid is starting to ooze out of it. Slice off any oozy, gross part. If it's going to be a while before you make the soup, put the rest of the melon in the fridge. (You don't really have to wait for the oozing liquid, but it is crucial that the melon be ripe verging on overripe.)

3. Cut the melon in half and scoop out the seeds while trying to scoop out as little melon juice as possible. Pour the juice and scoop out the flesh of the melon into a food processor (a blender would probably work, too).

4. Squeeze the juice of two oranges and pour that into the food processor/blender.

5. Peel and then grate some fresh ginger root into a fine mesh strainer (cheese cloth and other straining devices, and possibly even just your hands, will work as well) and squeeze the juice out of the grated ginger into the food processor/blender. How much? That's really up to you. I'd recommend grating and squeezing maybe an inch or so of ginger root into the soup, blending it up and tasting it before adding more. You want a little kick from the ginger, but not enough that it overwhelms the melon. Actually, that's what I want. You can decide for yourself.

6. Chill the soup in the fridge. This step is of course unnecessary if the melon has already been in the fridge all day.

7. Consume. At our house we pour it into soup bowls and eat it with a spoon, but you could just as easily pour it into cups and drink it right up.

Justin Fox is editorial director of the Harvard Business Review Group and author of "The Myth of the Rational Market."

By Justin Fox  |  August 26, 2010; 9:45 AM ET
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you need some photographic examples for this "gross, oozy" characterization -- I'd hate to cut away any good bits! Otherwise, sounds tasty (ginger cures many sins, perhaps even gross ooziness)

Posted by: bdballard | August 26, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, didn't think to pull my camera out yesterday morning. There was just this trail of melon juice on the countertop, about an inch's worth of the melon was squishy, and there was a small black spot. So I cut all that away and cut away all the flesh that was a darker color than the rest. Lost maybe 10% of the melon.

Posted by: JustinFox | August 26, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Another recipe that washes away some of Martha Stewart's sins is the chewy chocolate gingerbread cookie from the late 1990s. They are a symphony of flavors: deep bass from the molasses, cocoa and chocolate; spices in the middle range; and on top is the pairing of dry and fresh ginger. It's easy to see why this was "cookie of the year" in the Living magazine a few years ago. Definitely on my top 5 cookie list.

The recipe is here:

Posted by: meander510 | August 26, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Mmmm, melon soup. Even more delicious if you add some seltzer just before serving. You can add mint too, but to me that's just overkill.

Posted by: csdiego | August 26, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

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