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Culinary SOS

Three Melon Soup a True Delight for Dining in Summer

July 07, 1988|ROSE DOSTI | Times Staff Writer

Dear SOS: I would love to have the recipe for the Three Melon Soup served at the Westin South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa. It was so refreshing and beautiful to look at, a treat for summer dining.

--READER

Dear Reader: You're so right. So easy, too. The three melon fruit purees are swirled into a beautiful pattern on the plate.

WESTIN THREE MELON SOUP

1/2 (10 X 3-inch) wedge seedless watermelon, peeled

3/4 small seedless cantaloupe, peeled

1/4 small honeydew melon, peeled

2/3 cup plain yogurt

1/3 cup honey

6 mint leaves

In blender blend each melon separately, using 1/3 of yogurt and 1/3 of honey. Chill separately.

Slowly pour honeydew and cantaloupe purees on opposite sides of individual plates. Then pour watermelon puree in center. Swirl with wood pick in clockwise direction for swirl design. Garnish each with mint leaf. Makes 6 servings.

Dear SOS: Ever since the Ishi Grill on Beverly Boulevard closed, I've been searching for the espresso coffee gelatin dessert they featured among other beautifully presented food. I'm desperate to make the memory become a reality. Can you help?

--BEVERLY

Dear Beverly: Abracadabra . . . Ishi Grill may be gone, but the dessert, which happens to be a classic coffee dessert, lingers on.

ESPRESSO COFFEE JELLY

2 envelopes unflavored gelatin

3 cups strong espresso coffee

2 sticks cinnamon, optional

3 whole cloves, optional

2/3 cup sugar

Dash salt

1/4 cup rum

Whipped cream

Chocolate curls

Soften gelatin in 1/2 cup cold water. Combine espresso coffee with cinnamon and cloves in saucepan, if desired. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Remove cinnamon and cloves. Add gelatin and stir until dissolved. Stir in sugar, salt and rum. Pour into demitasse cups, dessert dishes or 1-quart mold. Chill until firm. If using mold, unmold onto serving platter. Garnish jelly with whipped cream and chocolate curls. Makes 8 servings.

Note: To make chocolate curls, using room temperature chocolate bar, scrap edges, using potato peeler over wax paper. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Dear SOS: I think you gave Shirley the wrong recipe. Here's the tuna casserole recipe that is our family's favorite. We prefer it made with cream of celery soup.

--SUE

Dear Sue: How nice of you to write. I think you're right. This one, made with minute rice, sounds like the real McCoy dating back to the '50s.

FAMILY TUNA CASSEROLE

1 1/3 cups water

1 can cream of mushroom or celery soup

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 1/3 cup instant rice, uncooked

1 (10-ounce) package frozen small peas

1 (7-ounce) can white albacore tuna

1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Paprika

Combine water, soup, onion, lemon juice, salt and pepper in small saucepan. Bring to boil, stirring over medium heat. Pour half of soup mixture into greased 2-quart casserole. In separate layers, add rice, peas and tuna. Add remaining soup mixture and top with cheese and paprika. Cover and bake at 375 degrees 20 minutes. Cook 10 minutes longer if made ahead and chilled. Makes 6 servings.

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