I’ve seen folks shake it, sniff it, whack it, poke it, prod it, hold it up to the light and everything in between when it comes to picking that perfect cantaloupe. Now truth be told I for one hate cantaloupe. I love most other melons but for me it stems from growing up as a child and us ALWAYS have that in the house because we grew so much of it. This stuff go put into cereal, cakes, on ice cream, jell-0, cookies, in salads and so forth. I just am not a huge fan. However Mr. Fantabulous is. So I buy for him. Now to me it’s pretty much straight forward when it comes to buying them however I can get how it can be confusing. They all pretty much look the same on the outside.
So how do you know what’s a good one? I’m going to share with you the tricks my parents taught me growing up that have never failed me.
→ Pick it up. It should be heavy in size (think bowling ball) and the weight should be evenly dispersed.
→ Check it out. The skin should appear webbed, and there shouldn’t be any dents or bruises. Look for one that’s tan or even slightly yellow — but not green.
→ Sniff it. Yep, your nose knows. Find the spot where the stem was attached, and take a big ol’ whiff. A ripe cantaloupe will smell sweet.
→ The Sweet Spot. Press the melon on the blossom end. It should give slightly, like a ripe pear.
Interesting facts about cantaloupes:
▪ Cantaloupe is called rockmelon in Australia
▪ Cantaloupe can be pureed and used in cold soup, sorbet, ice cream, or smoothies
▪ When choosing a cantaloupe use your nose – pick the cantaloupe that has a sweet smell
▪ It takes cantaloupes 3-4 months to grow before they are mature enough to be picked
▪ Cantaloupes received their name from Cantalupo, Italy where they were cultivated in the 1700’s
▪ Cantaloupes are a good source of vitamin C and A
▪ Cantaloupes are related to watermelon, honeydew, cucumbers, pumpkins, and squash