Melon season has finally arrived! It’s hard to beat the refreshing taste of these freshly cut fruits, especially when the ripeness is at its peak. Finding the perfect melon can be tricky if you aren’t sure what to look for. Follow these tips to get a ripe fruit every time:
How Does it Look?
There are a few things you can tell just by looking at the rind of melons. Start by checking for any bruises or moldy patches. If you’re picking out honeydew, look for a dull exterior. Glossier coatings on the outside may indicate that the fruit is not ripe yet. For watermelon, flip it over to make sure there is a creamy yellow spot from sitting on the ground to ripen in the sun.
How Does it Feel?
You’ve probably seen people tapping on melons in the grocery store. That’s to see if it makes a hollow sound, which indicates ripeness. Additionally, when choosing a watermelon, pick up a couple to get a feel for their average weight. Look for one that feels heavier for its size. Cantaloupe, on the other hand, should ideally feel slightly softer on the bottom (not mushy).
How Does it Smell?
While you may not be able to smell the ripeness of every melon, your nose can help you choose a better honeydew or cantaloupe. It’s like smelling cookies to know when they’re done in the oven. Honeydew will smell like the fruit on the outside when it becomes ripe enough. Cantaloupe will have a sweet scent, especially near the vine.
When you’ve mastered these three checkpoints, the only thing left is to taste it! Peak season for melons is typically the peak of summer. Visit your local farmers market and enjoy.