Chilled Kaffir Lime Melon Soup

butterfly Yields: 5 cups

Written By Eydie Desser


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Summertime calls for a refreshing chilled soup. As I peered at my beautiful kaffir lime tree, I noticed little kaffir limes starting to grow on the tree.  Kaffir lime is a citrus fruit native to Southeast Asia and is the key ingredient in Thai cuisine. (If you can’t find Kaffir limes, the recipe is still very delicious with everyday limes). It’s melon season as well, which  made me think of pairing the two together. This is how Kaffir Lime Melon Soup was born! This melon soup is not only very refreshing, it’s a little exotic too! The Kaffir lime zest and juice and the pinch of cayenne, will take you to a foreign land right here at home. 

Equipment needed: medium sized melon baller


  • 3-1/2 – 4 pounds. seedless watermelon, (about 7 cups) diced into 1- inch cubes 
  • pinch of cayenne 
  • 1 to 1 ½  tablespoons sherry vinegar 
  • 5 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or more to taste
  • zest and juice of 2 small kaffir limes (or 1 large), about 2 teaspoons juice or, zest and juice of 2 store bought limes
  • 1 small cantaloup, cut in half, seeds removed 
  • 1 small honeydew melon, cut in half, seeds removed, 
  • handful of fresh basil, thinly sliced (chiffonade)
  • handful of fresh mint, thinly sliced (chiffonade)


Make the soup:
  1. Place diced watermelon, cayenne pepper, sherry vinegar and 5 tablespoons of lime juice in a blender and process until completely puréed. Pour purée through a fine mesh strainer into a 6 cup or larger, measuring cup. Discard solids.
  2. Add 2 teaspoons grated Kaffir zest or other lime zest, adding more to taste
  3. To chill quickly, place the measuring cup in a bowl of ice water, or refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.
Make Melon balls:

Using a 1-1/2-inch melon baller, scoop balls from the halved and seeded honeydew and cantaloupe melons (about 2 cups)

To Serve:
  1. Taste the chilled soup and adjust seasonings as needed, a little more lime juice and zest for tartness, or cayenne for spice.
  2. Ladle soup into shallow bowls. Add three-5 melon balls to each bowl, and garnish with mint and basil.
butterfly Cook's Notes:
  1. Melons are an amazing fruit filled with antioxidants and anti-aging properties. They are very hydrating.  Maybe that’s why they are picked, ripe, in the summer.  Mother earth always knows! 
  2. Lime juice has an anti-inflammatory effect, and is beneficial for headaches and migraines.