There’s nothing more refreshing than an icy glass of sweet Cantaloupe Juice, with juicy bits of shredded melon. In this Philippines this is called Melon sa Malamig; “sa malamig” refers to cold drinks meant to cool you off, and this definitely does the trick. This easy recipe is a summertime treat!
There’s nothing more refreshing on a hot summer day than an icy glass of sweet Cantaloupe Juice, with juicy bits of shredded melon!
Note: This post first appeared on July 30, 2015. The recipe has been updated from the archives with updated content and photographs, as well as improved kitchen notes and recipe annotation. I hope you enjoy this favorite from my kitchen.
104 degrees. Just sitting still leaves you with beads of perspiration, slowly following gravity’s pull. The sweltering heat sounds horrible, but I secretly enjoyed it yesterday.
Granted, I spent a lot of time in the air conditioning. But we haven’t had many of these heat waves lately, so it kind of officially felt like summer, if that makes any sense. Adding to the summer feel are the markets brimming with melons, and I sliced them up for the kids yesterday. They were going to need something cool and juicy when they got home.
My son loves watermelon, icy cold, and my daughter favors cantaloupe. Between the two of them, the melons just disappear as quickly as I slice them.
When I cut into the cantaloupe, though, I stopped to get my sieve. Into the sieve went scoops of melon seeds and the sweet pulp around it. My mother used to make cantaloupe juice when I was a little girl – it’s quite popular in the Philippines, and there’s even a special melon scraper (affiliate link) that makes ribbons of delicious melon – you can usually find one in most Filipino kitchens.
Shredding cantaloupe was one of my favorite (and first) kitchen tasks growing up whenever we would get ready for a summer family party.
Drops of cool water clung to the pitcher as I stirred the ribbons of melon in the sweet cantaloupe juice. Between the kids and I, the pitcher was empty in minutes, each sip relished. It was cool, it was refreshing. It was just what we needed.
Melon sa Malamig
In the Philippines, Cantaloupe Juice is called Melon sa Malamig; the word “malamig” translates to “cold,” and in general, the term sa malamig (also seen as samalamig or palamig) refers to any cold, refreshing Filipino beverage. Other examples of samalamig are sago at gulaman (the Filipino version of boba), calamansi juice (Filipino lemonade made with calamansi fruit), and buko juice (coconut water).
I also like to describe Filipino Cantaloupe Juice as a cousin to Mexican agua fresca. It’s simply made by shredding ripe cantaloupe with a special melon scraper that creates beautiful ribbons of cantaloupe flesh, and also by extracting flavor and juice from the seeds and pulp. A simple syrup adds extra sweetness, and that’s it!
How to Pick the Perfect Cantaloupe
Have you ever wondered how to pick a ripe cantaloupe? See my One Quick Tip for how to pick the perfect cantaloupe. It’s an easy trick to find sweet cantaloupes for snacking, for this cantaloupe juice, in Ginger Cantaloupe Sangria, or in Cantaloupe Lime Popsicles!
For the simple syrup:
- 3 cups water
- 3 cups sugar
For the cantaloupe juice:
- 1 small ripe cantaloupe halved
- 4 1/2 cups water divided
- 2 cups simple syrup more or less, to taste
- To make the simple syrup, combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until sugar dissolves, about 3-4 minutes. Cool completely. This can be made a day or two in advance and stored in the refrigerator.
- Scoop the melon seeds and pulp into a sieve set over a bowl. Run about a cup of cold water though the seeds, pressing with the back of a spoon to extract any juice.
- Using a melon scraper (affiliate link), shred the cantaloupe into long strips into the bowl, along with any juice. Transfer the melon strips and juice into a pitcher with the remaining water, and flavor to taste with your simple syrup (see notes below). Transfer to the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours.
- Serve the cantaloupe juice with shredded cantaloupe over ice and enjoy!
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