Melon Butter
Like apple butter, melons can be cooked down to a jammy, spreadable condiment, as in this recipe from chef Silvia Baldini of Strawberry and Sage. Spread it on toast tomorrow morning or save it (via proper canning technique) for a pork chop in the dead of winter. Matt Taylor-Gross

Chef Silvia Baldini grew up making this summery melon spread every year with her family in Italy; it’s a great way to preserve dense melons like cantaloupes into the winter. Pair it with prosciutto, cheeses, or spread it on toast.

Baldini takes two very ripe melons—go for melons that aren’t too watery, like cantaloupe or charentais—removes the skin, and dices them. She then adds them to a pot along with half of their weight in sugar and cooks them until they break down, about 40 minutes. Then she uses an immersion blender to make a very smooth purée, then returns it to the heat and cooks it down for another ten minutes, until it’s thick and jelly-like. From there, you can either pour it into jars and refrigerate it for a couple of weeks, or process it (refer to the NCHFP’s canning guidelines) and break it out in winter, when perfectly ripe summer melons are a distant memory.

Get the recipe for Summer Melon Butter »