Sunday, February 10, 2013

Canary Melon

I cut open the Canary melon when it was this color

.....But this color on the inside
       My sweet husband often brings me sweet treats like a bower bird brings a silvery beetle casing to line the bower for his lady.  Last week Monsieur brought me a Canary melon.  And this is what I found out by searching the wondrous web.                                      

The Canary melon is a  Casaba type variety also known as Spanish melon, Juan Canary, Jaune des Canaries and Amarillo. It is a member of the Cucumis melo var inodoras family, referred to as winter melons, known as those that mature in late summer. 

The single greatest advantage that winter melons have over summer melon varieties is that they have a long post-vine shelf-life, allowing them to be stored longer and to be shipped to markets thousands of miles away. 

The Canary melon is oval-shaped, with a smooth skin. When the melon is ripe, its hard rind turns bright yellow, it develops a corrugated look and a slightly waxy feel and its flesh will be pale ivory in color. The texture of the flesh is notably succulent, almost wet and semi firm, similar to a ripe pear. Within the flesh, the fruit bears a dry salmon-orange seed cavity.

 The melon possesses flavors both tangy and mildly sweet.  Only choose Canary melons which are bright yellow (no green coloring on the skin) as these signal that they are mature and ready to eat. 

Melons harvested before maturity are considered to be of inferior quality as they will never reach the same level of true ripeness off the vine. 

 The melon was green when we got it.  And I am afraid that I cut it before it was "jaune, jaune"...yellow enough.  I saw some at the outdoor market yesterday that were almost neon in the saturation of their yellow skin. 

 On ours, the flesh was not white inside.   The taste was sweet but un-impressive.   I suspect that melons harvested before maturity will never obtain that "je ne sais quoi" melon-y tang either.   Better to buy local. 

Now ya know and so do I.  


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