Fish and Seafood, Gluten-free, Side Dishes

Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe

Loreto November 25, 2016

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Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe, a great break from the norm of every day life, hosting vibrant flavors and light natural textures, leaving you with a feeling of health and vitality, not to mention the smile on your face when your taste buds get tantalized by the unique combinations.


[This post is sponsored by The Italian Centre Shop, we’ve been compensated but all opinions are our own.]

Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe, is a great fast way to have lunch in a healthy and organic way, from the fresh arugula, to the beautifully smoked salmon, this dish will have you delighted with every bite, and leave  you with feeling fresh and light and healthy.



It is close to Fall, we are in Rome. The sun is shining, temperatures around the 30 Celsius mark, the sounds of a vibrant and bustling city echoing in the back drop. We are meeting Nicoletta’s friend Paola (or Paoletta, as Nicoletta calls her), for lunch. She works in the Via Veneto area, where Nicoletta once worked when working for the Minister of Labor, which is well known for great places to eat, as it is a hub of governmental population, higher end shops, and historical government buildings. After some deliberation, we decide on a place called Eden Barberini Bistrot, that Paola knew close to where she works and one she frequents. No menu really required, as they have a somewhat of a buffet table where you could choose, salads, pasta, meats, fish, or seafood. It was not a self serve, but a serviced restaurant and judging by the fullness of the restaurant with Italian patrons, it must be good. One thing you have to know about Italians, if they like a place they go frequently and will spread the word among friends and family ranting about the great food and service. If they don’t like a place, that is shared and an empty restaurant will be the outcome, or just a few non knowledgeable tourists may try the place. This was not the case with this place. This is where we were inspired, the serving table had quite a variety of foods but two in particular caught both Nicoletta and my attention. One, a Penne pasta with saffron ricotta sauce and cherry tomatoes (soon on our blog). The other, an arugula salad with thinly sliced cantaloupe and smoked salmon with some olive oil and balsamic cream. Couldn’t wait to get back in the kitchen and recreate this salad for our own and to share with you our inspiration and story. I give you Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe!


Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe. Deliciously quick and simple!

The recipe I would say is bare bones simple and natural, letting the main ingredients shine through out. What you will need for this lunch is:

  • 1 ripe Cantaloupe
  • 4 cups of washed and spun fresh arugula (plus few green leaf lettuce leaves)
  • 150 grams of smoked Atlantic Salmon
  • Extra virgin cold pressed D.O.P. olive oil
  • Balsamic cream
  • Fresh cracked sea salt
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Lemon wedges

I use organic produce. Some may say it is expensive, and it can be, but for the sake of quality and freshness, it is what I like to use. If your budget doesn’t allow it then try to find the best quality in your price range. The smoked salmon a product made by Sgambaro’s that we bought from the Italian Center Shop Little Italy Edmonton, along with the arugula, cantaloupe, lemons, e.v.o. oil and balsamic cream.


Putting this arugula salad together is easy and can be done in less that 15 minutes. First pick a nice serving dish, because we first eat with our eyes then with our taste buds. I toss the arugula with some olive oil, salt and pepper, then layer it on the plate as my base. The cantaloupe I cut very thinly and placed it nicely on top of the arugula. The top hosting nicely thin sliced smoked Atlantic salmon, and to finish it off a drizzle of balsamic cream which has some acidity but also a sweetness to it, along with fresh lemon wedges. There you have it a beautiful fresh light lunch that has nutritional value, delicious flavors and wonderful to look at!

The flavor starts with the  pepperiness of the arugula combined with  a rich sweetness and juiciness of the cantaloupe, then from nowhere the smoke in the salmon along with that rich ocean taste of the salmon floats on the base of the arugula and cantaloupe. Little hits of acidity from freshly squeezed lemon and that diverse taste of balsamic cream adding a great finally to every mouthful. The textures varying from the crisp freshness of the arugula, to the soft ripeness of the cantaloupe, and the smoothness and silkiness of the salmon leaving delightful memories on your tongue.

Visually stunning and organically simple, this Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Cantaloupe makes for a great lunch, or even a simple quick light dinner. This would also be a beautiful addition to the Holiday table in true Italian tradition, since Italians celebrate Christmas Eve with only fish and seafood dishes. It will definitely  put a smile on your face and fulfillment in your heart.  This is the joy of cooking at its best, creating wonderful dishes to be enjoyed in company knowing you had a hand into creating it!



Arugula Salad with Smoked Salmon and Canteloupe

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes


  • 4 cups of organic fresh arugula (plus few green leaf lettuce leaves)
  • 1/2 medium size cantaloupe, organic if you can find it
  • 150 grams of smoked salmon
  • Fresh cracked sea salt and black pepper
  • A few lemon wedges


  1. Wash arugula and green leaf lettuce and place in salad spinner and dry, then place in a bowl.
  2. Take cantaloupe and cut into thin 1/2 slices.
  3. Separate fillets of smoked salmon.
  4. Drizzle olive oil in bowl with arugula and crack sea salt and black pepper.
  5. Toss and taste to see if seasoning is good, add as necessary.
  6. Place dressed arugula on plate spreading it out to form the base of the salad.
  7. Layer the slices of cantaloupe on top of the arugula.
  8. Place the smoked salmon on top of the cantaloupe.
  9. Drizzle some balsamic cream over the top.
  10. Serve with some lemon wedges.
  11. ready to serve
  12. Enjoy!


  • Serving Size: 2 servings
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Song of the day: “You’re the one” by Tracy Chapman.


[This post is sponsored by The Italian Centre Shop, we’ve been compensated but all opinions are our own.]

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  • Avatar
    Reply Amanda Orlando November 25, 2016 at 9:55 am

    This is a great way to serve smoked salmon, and the cantaloupe would make it feel so fresh and bright

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 25, 2016 at 10:07 am

      Thank you Amanda, I am a huge fan of mixing sweet and savory, and this salad is a great way to show that these diverse flavors and textures work extremely well.
      Have a great day

  • Avatar
    Reply Puneeta @MapleandMarigold November 25, 2016 at 10:04 am

    I love smoked salmon with Arugula but have somehow never tried it with something sweet. The combination with cantaloupe sounds delicious.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 25, 2016 at 10:09 am

      Hi Puneeta, you have to try this you will love it I am sure. The unique flavor of the cantaloupe and the smoked salmon all on that peppery fresh bed of greens is amazing.
      Thank you for commenting.

  • Avatar
    Reply annika November 25, 2016 at 10:50 am

    What a lovely combination of flavours! And the presentation is perfect! I am certain this will somehow sneak its way to the table the next time I entertain if not before!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 25, 2016 at 11:31 am

      Thank you Annika, I am sure your guests will love it. It has such balanced flavors and textures, and not bad to look at, lol.
      Take care!

  • Avatar
    Reply Marisa November 25, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    This is absolutely outstanding and would indeed make a wonderful primo piatto for Christmas Eve! 🙂

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 27, 2016 at 10:16 am

      Hi Marisa, our house or yours? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a Christmas celebration dinner with other fellow foodies each bringing a dish and a memory to be shared around the table. One day maybe. Thank you for your kind words and wishing you a great Sunday!

  • Avatar
    Reply Colleen Milne November 25, 2016 at 6:11 pm

    Beautiful, Loreto. I love this salad, and living here in BC, I have to say that I have made versions of it many times over during our summer months, with fresh arugula and cantaloupe from my Okanagan garden, along with our Pacific BC smoked wild Sockeye salmon.
    But, we are in the winter months here in Canada and you are making me long for that time again! I have never heard of a balsamic cream, though, and your recipe doesn’t describe it, can you elaborate?
    Thanks so much for sharing this amazing experience. too.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto December 9, 2016 at 7:15 am

      Hi Colleen, thank you for such a wonderful comment. I think as somewhat of a writer it is nice to hear that what we write influences people in a positive way. This salad has summer written all over it and I here you when you say you long for that season. The balsamic cream can be found in Italian markets, if not in gourmet stores that sell preserves and vinegar, and oil.It is balsamic vinegar that has been reduced to a syrop consistency making it more sweeter and still having some acidity. Wonderful for salads, and on meats or chicken. Even on ice cream. If you see it buy it, a lovely product. Focacia dipped in a good D.O.P olive oil and balsamic cream swirl is divine, and I can only imagine on some fresh wild sockeye salmon.
      Sorry for the late response, missed the comment at first but so clad to find it.
      Have a wonderful day

  • Avatar
    Reply Teresa November 25, 2016 at 11:28 pm

    It’s so nice to turn food experiences into recipes that will bring back memories for years to come. Your salad sounds like a wonderful way to make the most of smoked salmon.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 27, 2016 at 10:14 am

      Hi Teresa, so true, this is the amazing thing about food. It holds such amazing memories and experiences, and it is always beautiful to see someones eyes light up when you mention a recipe, and they are so eager to share their story. What could be better than that! Thanks for the comment and have a lovely day!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kathy @ Beyond the Chicken Coop November 26, 2016 at 7:18 am

    This salad is beautiful. I love the simplicity and combination of ingredients. This is a salad to be savored!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 27, 2016 at 10:12 am

      Hi Kathy, you are so right on the savoring of this salad. Tasting this could not be a rushed experience, you would miss too much. This is a sit down, relaxed, and gracious meal experience. Thank you so much for your comment!
      Have a great week coming up.

  • Avatar
    Reply Justine @ November 26, 2016 at 11:49 am

    What a fresh and delicious looking salad combining 2 of my all time favourite ingredients — smoked salmon and arugula! I would have NEVER thought to add cantaloupe to the mix, but I bet it’s a delight to the tastebuds. Beautiful work, you two!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 27, 2016 at 10:10 am

      Thank you Justine! This was a wonderful flavor and packed salad. The cantaloupe added such freshness to the smoke and saltiness of the salmon, and the arugula has that lovely spicy bite that just awakens your pallet. Give it a try would love to hear your feed back.
      Take care.

  • Avatar
    Reply Hilary November 27, 2016 at 4:31 am

    I love this original flavour combination! Such a great idea- I bet the fragrance of the cantaloupe works beautifully with the smokiness and saltiness of the salmon.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 27, 2016 at 9:53 am

      Hi Hillary, yes the aromas are so fresh, smoky and sweet. I love going to Italy plenty of inspirations and creative ideas. Thank you for commenting, and have a wonderful relaxing Sunday!

  • Avatar
    Reply Sean November 27, 2016 at 10:33 am

    You have a real talent for combining flavours, and a clear appreciation for a dish with some complexity! I don’t think I’ve ever seen arugula, smoked salmon, and cantaloupe in combination, but it sounds like a wonderful mix. I drift away from salads some times, given that they can get a little uninspired, but you’ve reminded me that with care and creativity, you can make a salad a truly special thing.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto November 28, 2016 at 12:35 pm

      Hi Sean thank you for you so kind words. I am a bit of an adventurer when it comes to mixing flavors. My motto is if it doesn’t work I won’t do it again, but it is worth a try, especially with this salad, the diverse flavors complimented each other in a harmonious and balanced manner.
      Have a great week cooking.

  • Avatar
    Reply Alice December 21, 2016 at 2:52 am

    One question – what is Cantaloupe? I’ve never heard of it.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta December 21, 2016 at 9:36 am

      It is a melon, Alice, sweet, with orange flesh and fragrant smell.

  • Avatar
    Reply Victoria @ Salmon Recipes August 5, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    This salmon looks so great, but I really could wolf down this at a minute and I concur, in case you don´t have access to fresh fish, frozen is best.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto August 6, 2018 at 8:54 pm

      Thank you Victoria, luckily now we have a few fish mongers flying in fresh fish which makes me a very happy camper!
      Have a great week!

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