It isn’t a rice salad but a risotto. Summery.
A risotto with prosciutto crudo (ham) and melon.
A countryside lunch.
I don’t remember where the inspiration for the recipe came from, but it has been part of my summer repertoire for about twenty years, and I can’t forget the first time I cooked this risotto.
It was summer, and we were at the country home.
For lunch, I proposed a ham and melon risotto. And I still smile when I think back to Guido and his brother looking at each other between amused and perplexed, accepting the proposal with some reservation.
Prosciutto and melon in a risotto? If mental reserves were audible, I would have heard many sounds that day.
In the kitchen overlooking the garden, flooded by the summer sun and the chirping of cicadas, I began to cook, preparing and processing the different ingredients. From time to time, someone sneaks up behind me asking, “is it all ok?”.
Would the contrast between sweet and savory and hot and cold ingredients have convinced? At the time of tasting, I waited for the response of my diners. You can imagine the end. Otherwise, the recipe would not be here on the blog.
Prosciutto and melon risotto.
The savoriness of the ham and the sweetness of the melon work well in this summer risotto that you can serve hot or just warm. Tasty and fresh at the same time.
I cook risotto classically. I prepare a light sauce with little white onion, finely chopped so that it melts during cooking. I cook the rice in a good meat or vegetable stock, but it must be tasty so that the rice absorbs the flavors of the cooking liquid.
At the end of the cooking, I let the risotto rest for a couple of minutes before adding prosciutto and melon.
Compared to the classic prosciutto and melon salad, this risotto is perfect for when you’re looking for a complete recipe, offering a traditional Italian dish with a different accent but without redundant sophistication.
Buona cucina, Monica
Cook with me.
If you love wild herbs and are looking for a vegetarian recipe, take a look at risotto with bladder campion and leek (HERE). Just a few ingredients for a great dish.
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If you like the smell of mint, flavor the melon as follows: after cutting it into cubes, leave the melon and a few leaves of the mint in an airtight container in the fridge for at least two hours. Then remove the mint and proceed as per the recipe.
You can use white melon if you wish.
Prosciutto and melon risotto recipe
List of the Ingredients
Carnaroli rice, 280g
white onion, 1 small
vegetable or meat stock, 700ml
white wine, ½ glass
80g sweet prosciutto (cured ham)
muskmelon, 4 thin slices
olive oil and salt, to taste
Finely chop the onion and cook gently in a large pan with a drop of olive oil, butter, and a pinch of salt.
Turn up the heat a little, pour in the wine, and let it evaporate for a minute before adding the rice.
Cook for a few minutes before covering the rice with stock.
Continue cooking over low-medium heat, stirring occasionally and adding stock as necessary. Taste to see if you need to adjust the salt.
In the meantime, dice the prosciutto and set it aside.
Clean the melon, cut out four thin slices and dice it; set it aside in the refrigerator.
Finish cooking the risotto when it is al dente. Let it rest for a couple of minutes.
Add diced prosciutto and melon. Stir.
Serve the risotto.