Melons

Types of Melons

Melons are of the same family as cucumbers and zucchini and grow on vines along the ground.

Storage, Selection and Availability

Melons do not ripen once pick. Generally, select, full firm melons that feel heavy for their size. Avoid sunken soft spots or bruises. Brown marks can result where melons are sitting on the ground and does not indicate inner damage. Store whole melons at room temperature but cut melons wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator.

Uses

Melons can be eaten by themselves or in a fruit salad. Rockmelon (also called canteloupe) is very versatile and served in Italian cusine with proscuitto. It can be also served with prawns, herbs and lemon juice in a salad or mix pureed rockmelon with mayonaise and serve with shellfish. Melons can be used icecream or to make a sorbet or granita. Watermelon rind can be pickled and used as a condiment with meat similar to Italian mustard fruits.

Nutrition Information

Melons are low in fat and high in vitamin C and potassium. Melons particularly watermelons have a very high water content.

Watermelon

Most watermelons are cylindrical or round, with mottled or striped green skin, and a pink to red centre. Other varieties such as Champagne watermelons (with golden flesh) are sometimes available. Watermelons are about 90% water, and 8 to 12% sugar. Many watermelons have dark brown seeds, but in recent years seedless watermelons have become extremely common in Australia. These may have some small white residual seeds.
Watermelons are available all year round, peaking in Summer, from December to May.

Honeydew Melon

Honeydews are usually round to slightly oval (about 15-20cm diameter) with a smooth, white or gold skin. The flesh colour ranges from pale green to green, and is moist and sweet, with seeds in the centre. Honeydew melons are available all year round peaking in summer (January and February.)
The flesh of white skinned honeydews is sweeter, and has a higher level of natural sugars.

Rockmelon

Rockmelons are usually round or slightly elongated with firm, netted or scaly, cream or buff rind. Some rockmelon varieties have grooves or sutures running from end to end, and all have moist, sweet, orange to peach-coloured flesh, and a distinct tropical fragrance. The seeds are in the centre of the fruit. In Australia most rockmelons are fully netted melon with no sutures and orange flesh.
They are available all year round peaking in summer (November to March).

Mango Melon

A new variety of melon similar looking to a honeydew but with a yellower flesh and skin. Mango melons have a mango aroma and flavour and are delicious.