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Melon Balls with Poppy Seed Dressing - A Family Feast

Melon Balls with Poppy Seed Dressing

When Jack first developed this recipe years ago, agave nectar was not available like it is today and he used a combination of honey and simple syrup. Feel free to do the same if agave nectar is not your thing. Simple syrup is made by cooking equal amounts of sugar and water down to a syrup. Then you can use it in conjunction with the honey so honey doesn’t end up being the predominate flavor. The dressing needs sweet but using only honey in the dressing would change the flavor too much.

Yield: 8-10 servings 1x
Prep: 45 minsCook: 2 minsTotal: 47 minutes


  • 4 cups watermelon balls (use this type of tool to cut the melon into balls)
  • 4 cups cantaloupe balls
  • 4 cups honeydew balls
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella balls (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar (or white wine vinegar if white balsamic not available)
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar (see note above for alternatives)
  • 1 teaspoon Colman’s dry mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup canola or grapeseed oil
  • 1/4 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a small dry fry pan, over medium, toast the poppy seeds for 2-3 minutes tossing and turning often until they are toasted.
  2. In the bowl of a blender, add lemon juice, vinegar, Agave, both mustards, salt and pepper and blend to combine. Then with the blender running on low, slowly add both oils until blended. Toss in the poppy seeds and pulse just to blend.
  3. Place the melon balls (and optional cheese), in a large bowl and pour the dressing over and toss.
  4. Serve immediately. Note: If you are not serving immediately, keep the fruit, cheese and dressing separate. When ready to assemble, drain off any liquid that the fruit may have given off, combine the three together and serve.

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