Melon with Coconut Milk

Preparation Time: 15 Minutes
Cooking Time: 10 Minutes

This is a quick version of a Hong-Kong inspired recipe. Make sure you use a wok that is non-stick, because an ordinary carbon-steel wok will react with the acid from the berries or the coconut and turn the food greyish, which is unappetising. Prepare the recipe up to stage 4 in advance, if you like.


  • 2 x 400 ml(14 fl oz) tins coconut milk
  • 6 tablespoonssugar
  • 150 ml(5 fl oz) cold milk
  • 1.5kg (3 lb) ripe honeydew melons (about 1 or 2)


  • handful fresh basil leaves


  1. In a non-stick wok or large non-stick frying pan, combine the coconut milk and sugar, bring to simmering point and simmer for 10 Minutes, or until the mixture begins to thicken.
  2. Add the cold milk and remove from the heat. Allow to cool thoroughly. Pour into a bowl, cover with cling film and refrigerate. This can be prepared the night before. P
  3. With a melon baller, scoop out balls from about a quarter of the melon. Place in a bowl, wrap with cling film and refrigerate.
  4. Now peel and deseed the remaining melon. Cut into large pieces and purée in a blender or food processor until it is reduced to a thick liquid. Pour into a medium-sized bowl, cover with cling film and refrigerate. P
  5. When you are ready to serve, combine the two mixtures as follows. Take a soup tureen and pour the coconut mixture into one side of it and the honeydew mixture on the other side, forming a yin/yang pattern. Add the melon balls, garnish with the basil leaves and give a few gentle stirs. Serve.

P Can be prepared ahead, in two stages if wished: complete to the end of stage 2, cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Then prepare up to the end of stage 4, cover with cling film and refrigerate for up to 6 hours.