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Melons

VIEWS: 87 PAGES: 11

									                                     Melons

                                    Melons are great all by themselves, though
                                    some people like to perk up their flavor by
                                    sprinkling lemon juice, salt, or liqueur on
                                    them. Look for three things when selecting
                                    a melon: (1) Was it picked too soon?
                                    Each variety turns a certain color at
                                    maturity. If your melon isn't the right
                                    color, reject it. (2) Is it damaged? If it has
                                    soft spots, cracks, or mold, reject it. (3) Is
                                    it ripe? Even mature melons may need a
                                    few days to ripen fully.

                                    If a melon flunks either of the first two
                                    tests, don't buy it. If it passes those tests,
                                    but isn't ripe, just leave it on your kitchen
                                    counter for a few days until it reaches full
                                    flavor. All melons should also be heavy for
                                    their size.

Substitutes: starfruit OR papayas (these also work in salsas)

Equivalents: One pound = one cup, cubes



Varieties:

African horned cucumber See kiwano (melon).

African horned melon See kiwano (melon).



                                       ambrosia melon Notes: This looks
                                       and tastes like a cantaloupe, but the
                                       flesh is a brighter orange.
                                       Substitutes: cantaloupe
Canary melon = Juan Canary
melon Notes: These tend to vary in
quality, so unless you're good at
selecting melons, stick with more
idiot-proof varieties like the honeydew
or cantaloupe. Canaries should, at a
minimum, have bright yellow rinds.
They're in season in the fall.
Substitutes: honeydew OR
cantaloupe
cantaloupe = nutmeg melon =
muskmelon = netted melon =
rockmelon Notes: These are
popular because they're easy to select
and very sweet. Ripe cantaloupes
have dull yellow backgrounds with
raised netting. Avoid those with
protruding stems, or tears in the rind at
the stem end--it's a tell-tale sign that
the melon was picked too soon. When
ripe melons are picked, the stem falls
off easily, leaving a small, clean
depression. After checking the stem
end, flip the melon over and check the
blossom end. It should be fragrant and
yield a bit when pressed. Cantaloupes
are cheapest in the summer.
Substitutes: Cranshaw melon OR
honeydew melon OR Persian melon
(larger)


casaba melon Notes: These aren't
as flavorful as other melons, but they
have a fairly long shelf life. Since
they have thick rinds, it's useless to
smell them as a test for ripeness. Look
instead at the color (it should be bright
yellow), and then check to see if the
blossom end yields to gentle
pressure. Substitutes: Santa Claus
melon (These also have a long shelf
life.) OR Crenshaw melon OR Spanish
melon OR Sharlyn melon OR
cantaloupe
                                 Charantais melon = French
                                 Charantais melon Notes: This is
                                 reputed to be one of the best melon
                                 varieties of all. Substitutes:
                                 honeydew melon OR cantaloupe




Christmas melon See Santa Claus melon.




                                  Crane melon Notes: This melon-
                                  cantaloupe cross is exceptionally
                                  juicy and flavorful, but it's hard to
                                  find outside of Sonoma County,
                                  California. Substitutes: cantaloupe




                                 Cranshaw melon = Crenshaw
                                 melon Notes: This large, popular
                                 melon is a cross between the Persian
                                 and Casaba melons. The rinds come
                                 in two colors: yellow and creamy
                                 white. The yellow ones taste better.
                                 You can buy Cranshaws while they're
                                 still a little underripe and let them sit
                                 on the counter for a few days. When
                                 fully ripe, a Cranshaw will be fragrant
                                 and yield slightly to gentle pressure at
                                 its blossom end. They're best in the
                                 fall. Substitutes: casaba melon OR
                                 Persian melon OR Sharlyn melon OR
                                      Spanish melon OR cantaloupe OR
                                      honeydew melon

Crenshaw melon See Cranshaw melon.

English tomato See kiwano (melon).



                                      Galia melon Notes: This sweet, juicy
                                      melon is a honeydew-cantaloupe
                                      cross. Its biggest drawback is its
                                      relatively high price. Substitutes:
                                      honeydew OR cantaloupe



hedged gourd See kiwano (melon).

honeyball melon = honey ball melon Notes: This is just like a honeydew melon, only
it's smaller, rounder, and covered with netting. Substitutes: honeydew melon (larger)
OR cantaloupe



                                  honeydew melon = honey dew melon
                                  Notes: These large, choice melons have
                                  either green or orange flesh. As honeydews
                                  ripen, they turn from green to creamy white
                                  to yellow. Avoid green ones, but a creamy
                                  white one will (unlike other melons) ripen on
                                  your counter in a few days. A perfectly ripe
                                  honeydew will yield just a bit to pressure at
                                  the blossom end and have a sticky, velvety
                                  rind. Substitutes: cantaloupe OR Cranshaw
                                  melon

horned melon See kiwano (melon).

jelly melon See kiwano (melon).
                               kharbouza melon Notes: This is a very
                               crunchy, mildly sweet melon.




                               kiwano = kiwano melon = horned melon
                               = African horned cucumber = African
                               horned melon = English tomato = hedged
                               gourd = jelly melon = melano
                               Pronunciation: kee-WAH-noh Notes:
                               This melon has a gorgeous orange rind with
                               spikes--poke a stick in it and you'd have a
                               medieval mace for a Halloween costume.
                               The yellow-green flesh has the consistency
                               of jello, and tastes a bit like cucumbers.
                               Substitutes: cucumber (the flesh lacks the
                               brilliant chartreuse color of the kiwano's
                               flesh.) OR other melon

melano See kiwano (melon).

muskmelon See cantaloupe.

netted melon See cantaloupe.

nutmeg melon See cantaloupe.




                                Ogen melon Notes: This melon hails
                                from Israel, and it's very highly
                                regarded by melon fans. Substitutes:
                                honeydew melon OR cantaloupe
                                        Persian melon Notes: These are
                                        large, round melons. They're
                                        excellent when vine-ripened, but
                                        mediocre when not. Avoid Persian
                                        melons that have green backgrounds
                                        below the netting--they were picked
                                        too early. Also avoid those with
                                        protruding stems, or tears in the rind
                                        at the stem end--it's a tell-tale sign
                                        that the melon was picked too soon.
                                        When ripe melons are picked, the
                                        stem falls off easily, leaving a small,
                                        clean depression. They peak in the
                                        summer months. Substitutes:
                                        Cranshaw (a cross between the
                                        Persian and casaba melons) OR
                                        Sharlyn melon (white flesh instead
                                        of orange) OR cantaloupe (smaller)

rockmelon See cantaloupe.

                                   Santa Claus melon = Christmas melon
                                   Notes: This is distinguished mostly by
                                   its long shelf life--you can store an uncut
                                   Santa Claus melon for several months.
                                   They have thick rinds, so don't bother
                                   smelling them for ripeness--they don't
                                   give off much of an aroma. Substitutes:
                                   honeydew (better flavor) OR cantaloupe
                                   (better flavor) OR casaba melons (These
                                   also have a long shelf life.)

                                   Sharlyn melon Notes: When ripe, this
                                   has an orange background with green
                                   netting. It's very perishable, so don't wait
                                   more than two days after getting it home
                                   to eat it. Substitutes: Persian melon
                                   (This has orange, not white, flesh) OR
                                   Cranshaw melon OR Spanish melon OR
                                   cantaloupe


Spanish melon = Green Tendral melon = Elche honeydew Notes: These are
delicious melons, but it's hard to know when they're fully ripe. Unlike most other
melons, a ripe Spanish melon will have a green rind and be firm at the blossom end.
Substitutes: cranshaw melon OR casaba melon
                      Watermelon Notes: There are about
                      50 varieties of watermelon on the
                      market. They all taste about the same,
                      but they vary in size, flesh color, and in
                      whether they are seeded or seedless.
                      Picnic melons are largest, while icebox
                      melons are round and compact. Many
                      stores also carry yellow-fleshed, white-
                      fleshed, and seedless melons. The rind
                      should be heavy for its size, and free of
                      bruises, soft spots, or cuts. To check for
                      ripeness, look at the pale side of the
                      melon (where it rested while it was
                      growing)--it should be yellow, not
                      white. If your market sells halved
                      watermelons, inspect the flesh--it should
                      be firm, brightly colored, and free of
                      white streaks. Seeded watermelons
                      should have dark brown or black seeds.
                      To store, wrap watermelon slices
                      loosely in plastic and refrigerate for up
                      to two days. Uncut watermelon can be
                      stored at room temperature (preferably
                      in a cool spot) for up to two weeks.
                      Substitutes: honeydew melon


                    yellow melon = dua gan = Korean
                    melon Notes: These melons are small,
                    about the size of medium papaya. They
                    taste like cantaloupe, but with firmer
                    flesh. Substitutes: cantaloupe




Here is your another melon differences:
Red, pink, white, yellow or orange watermelon? Take
your pick.
One of the tastiest ways to keep cool in summer is to munch on ice cold watermelon. No
summer picnic is complete without watermelon. There's more to this fruit than its sweet,
red center. Learn how to select a watermelon, and then cool off with the many .

Watermelon history

Watermelon's botanical name, Citrullus vulgaris, comes from the diminutive form of
citrus, referring to the color and shape of the fruit, and vulgaris meaning common or
ordinary fruit. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out where its English common
name, watermelon, comes from. The flesh of this succulent fruit is over 90 percent water.
Native to Africa, it was a valuable and portable source of water for desert situations and
when natural water supplies were contaminated.
Watermelons were cultivated in Egypt and India as far back as 2500 B.C. as evidenced in
ancient hieroglyphics.

Watermelon varieties

The more than five hundred varieties of watermelon grown worldwide give consumers
many choices, with a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and colors to choose from. They are
generally divided into icebox and picnic categories. The icebox category is so called
because the size of the melons, ranging from five to fifteen pounds, allows them to fit
more easily into the refrigerator. Picnics are larger, weighing from fifteen to fifty pounds,
yet they can grow much larger. In 1991, Bill Rogerson of North Carolina, USA, won a
place in the Guinness Book of World Records for his gigantic 279-pound watermelon!

We are most familiar with the vivid reddish-pink flesh dotted with black seeds, but there
are also white-, pink-, yellow- and orange-fleshed varieties, both with seeds and without.
Color, size and shape have little bearing on the flavor of the flesh between differing
varieties. Seedless varieties are not truly seedless, but actually do contain tiny, white,
edible immature seeds in lesser amounts than traditional watermelons.

Tips on choosing the perfectly ripe melon
Watermelon selection and storage

Watermelon season runs from May to September, but peak is mid-June to late August,
making them a perfect summer choice in the northern hemisphere. There are several
schools of thought on how to select a properly ripened melon, but I've always used the
thumping method with great success. When thumped by flicking the middle finger off the
thumb against the melon, the melon should produce a deep, rich thudding sound. The
skin should be dull and slightly waxy (although many are waxed to shine), yielding only
slightly to pressure, and the stem should be attached, brownish and dry. The round or
oblong melon should be symmetrical without any flat sides, feeling heavy for its size.
The underside where it lies on the ground should be a pale yellow color, not white or
light green.
Melons will continue to ripen and soften a little at room temperature but not much.
Melons picked before their prime will never develop full flavor. Whole watermelon
should be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week. Chilling injury occurs at
temperatures below 40 degrees.

If you are purchasing a cut standard melon, look for bright red flesh with mature dark
brown or black seeds. Unless it's a seedless variety, an abundance of white seeds means it
was picked before its prime. Avoid those with white streaks through the flesh and those
pieces where the flesh is mealy, dry and/or separating from the seeds. Cut watermelon
should be wrapped tightly, refrigerated and used within a few days.

Watermelons and health

One generous slice of watermelon (about 1/16th of a melon) contains large amounts of
vitamin C and beta-carotene which may help protect against various forms of cancer due
to their antioxidant properties. Watermelon is also high in potassium which helps regulate
heart functions and normalize blood pressure. It's a good source of fiber which helps
maintain bowel regularity and works to prevent colon and rectal cancer. Watermelon
seeds contain cucurbocitrin to aid in lowering blood pressure and improve kidney
function. The sweet watermelon surprisingly has only half the sugar content (5 percent)
of an apple. It tastes sweeter because the sugar is its main taste-producing agent. Two
cups of watermelon has only 80 calories, no fat, and no cholesterol.

Tips on choosing the perfectly ripe melon

Watermelon selection and storage

Watermelon season runs from May to September, but peak is mid-June to late August,
making them a perfect summer choice in the northern hemisphere. There are several
schools of thought on how to select a properly ripened melon, but I've always used the
thumping method with great success. When thumped by flicking the middle finger off the
thumb against the melon, the melon should produce a deep, rich thudding sound. The
skin should be dull and slightly waxy (although many are waxed to shine), yielding only
slightly to pressure, and the stem should be attached, brownish and dry. The round or
oblong melon should be symmetrical without any flat sides, feeling heavy for its size.
The underside where it lies on the ground should be a pale yellow color, not white or
light green.

Melons will continue to ripen and soften a little at room temperature but not much.
Melons picked before their prime will never develop full flavor. Whole watermelon
should be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week. Chilling injury occurs at
temperatures below 40 degrees.

If you are purchasing a cut standard melon, look for bright red flesh with mature dark
brown or black seeds. Unless it's a seedless variety, an abundance of white seeds means it
was picked before its prime. Avoid those with white streaks through the flesh and those
pieces where the flesh is mealy, dry and/or separating from the seeds. Cut watermelon
should be wrapped tightly, refrigerated and used within a few days.

Watermelons and health

One generous slice of watermelon (about 1/16th of a melon) contains large amounts of
vitamin C and beta-carotene which may help protect against various forms of cancer due
to their antioxidant properties. Watermelon is also high in potassium which helps regulate
heart functions and normalize blood pressure. It's a good source of fiber which helps
maintain bowel regularity and works to prevent colon and rectal cancer. Watermelon
seeds contain cucurbocitrin to aid in lowering blood pressure and improve kidney
function. The sweet watermelon surprisingly has only half the sugar content (5 percent)
of an apple. It tastes sweeter because the sugar is its main taste-producing agent. Two
cups of watermelon has only 80 calories, no fat, and no cholesterol.

Tips on choosing the perfectly ripe melon
Watermelon selection and storage

Watermelon season runs from May to September, but peak is mid-June to late August,
making them a perfect summer choice in the northern hemisphere. There are several
schools of thought on how to select a properly ripened melon, but I've always used the
thumping method with great success. When thumped by flicking the middle finger off the
thumb against the melon, the melon should produce a deep, rich thudding sound. The
skin should be dull and slightly waxy (although many are waxed to shine), yielding only
slightly to pressure, and the stem should be attached, brownish and dry. The round or
oblong melon should be symmetrical without any flat sides, feeling heavy for its size.
The underside where it lies on the ground should be a pale yellow color, not white or
light green.
Melons will continue to ripen and soften a little at room temperature but not much.
Melons picked before their prime will never develop full flavor. Whole watermelon
should be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week. Chilling injury occurs at
temperatures below 40 degrees.

If you are purchasing a cut standard melon, look for bright red flesh with mature dark
brown or black seeds. Unless it's a seedless variety, an abundance of white seeds means it
was picked before its prime. Avoid those with white streaks through the flesh and those
pieces where the flesh is mealy, dry and/or separating from the seeds. Cut watermelon
should be wrapped tightly, refrigerated and used within a few days.

Watermelons and health

One generous slice of watermelon (about 1/16th of a melon) contains large amounts of
vitamin C and beta-carotene which may help protect against various forms of cancer due
to their antioxidant properties. Watermelon is also high in potassium which helps regulate
heart functions and normalize blood pressure. It's a good source of fiber which helps
maintain bowel regularity and works to prevent colon and rectal cancer. Watermelon
seeds contain cucurbocitrin to aid in lowering blood pressure and improve kidney
function. The sweet watermelon surprisingly has only half the sugar content (5 percent)
of an apple. It tastes sweeter because the sugar is its main taste-producing agent. Two
cups of watermelon has only 80 calories, no fat, and no cholesterol.

Using watermelons

The most common usage of watermelon is to chill the melon and slice or cut into cubes
for a quick cold snack or dessert. A popular American line dance honors the watermelon
called the Watermelon Crawl. In Italy, watermelon pudding is a popular dessert usually
made of watermelon, almonds, chocolate, and cinnamon. Watermelon's refreshingly
sweet flesh is also wonderful as an ice and in mixed fruit and melon cups. A Southern
favorite in the USA is pickles made from the watermelon rind. Watermelon is also an
excellent choice for those with artistic flair who enjoy making edible sculptures. The
hollowed, carved rind makes a flattering basket for holding fruit salads and such. The
Russians make a hearty beer from watermelon juice.

								
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