Summer is all about the fruit, particularly when it comes to the bounty of melons. Refreshing and juicy, melons serve as the perfect starter with a simple slice of prosciutto or even as a dessert to finish a meal on a sweet note. Encased inside a protective green layer, a melon's seductive flesh is the holy grail of summer for fruit lovers.
However, choosing a perfect melon ready for eating can require the skills of a detective picking up on a number of clues. Knowing how to detect if a melon's coveted flesh is dense and sweet or sticky and insipid is the result of some careful observations before purchase.
Here are 5 steps on how to choose a perfect melon:
1. Melon Heavy
The first thing to do is check the weight of the melon. The heavier it is, the sweeter and tastier it promises to be.
2. Under Pressure
Step two: check the blossom end (opposite the stem end) of the melon. If it yields a little under pressure under your thumb, it means that the fruit is mature, and ready for eating.
3. The Smell Test
If you've always mocked other shoppers smelling melons, they were infact onto something. The smell of a melon is a good indicator of ripeness. If the scent is slightly sweet, they are spot on and ready for eating. However, if the smell is too strong, it's an indication that the fruit is overripe.
4. Beauty is Only Skin Deep
Contrary to popular belief, the smooth or webbed appearance of the skin of the melon does not matter. However, it's best to banish melons from your basket that have soft skin as well as punctures or dents.
5. Count the Segments
If the skin's appearance doesn't matter, it's still good to pay attention to the number of segments that appear under the surface of the melon - you know, those dark green furrows. If the fruit has 10 it probably means that it is delicious.
Also, the more slices that are pronounced the more chance the melon will be good.
After all that hard work detecting the right melon, do not store it in the fridge! Leave it out in the open at room temperature and eat it quickly to enjoy it at its peak.
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Clare Smyth, Hélène Darroze and Nieves Barrágan Mohacho are just a few of the women recognised in CODE Hospitality's annual round-up of influential women creating positive change in the industry. See the list.