The first time they had the Lemondrop melons it was just 3 melons. This time the had a large section full of various melons. The sign above them just said "Exotic Melons- $3.99 ea". They had 7 different varieties and they were all names I had never heard of before.
Some may be familiar with these already but they are definitely all exotic to me. I wanted to buy 1 of each but at $3.99 per melon I could not afford that. I opted to go for another Lemondrop Melon because I knew they were good and had been craving one. I also wanted to come home and look up the others to see if I would like them.
I took pictures of the melons as there was no way I would ever remember all of the names. I am sure the lady working only a few feet away in the produce section thought I was nuts!
|Casaba and Galia Melons|
Casaba Melons are a variety of Muskmelon, which are smooth skinned melons including the honeydew. They have no aroma and are not as flavorful as other melons but can be stored longer. The flavor has been described as *"mildly sweet with a cucumber-like flavor " Casaba Melons should be stored at room temperature and are fully ripe when the skin has turned bright yellow (so I am assuming the one pictured above is not ripe yet). They are grown in California and Arizona from June-October.
Casaba are a good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin K, Potassium, Copper, Vitamin C and Vitamin B6.
According to Wikipedia *"The Galia is a type of hybrid melon originating from a cantaloupe-honeydew cross" It is believed that this melon was originally developed by growers in Israel. Galia Melons are described as *"sweet and aromatic, with a flavor more like a cantaloupe than a honeydew although with a complexity of their own." These melons should be stored at room temperature.
The Galia's peek growth season is May-August.
These melons are a good source of Potassium, Vitamin A and Folate (for you pregger mamas out there)
|Santa Claus, Lemondrop and Orange Flesh Melons|
Also called the Christmas Melon or Piel de Sapo. These melons are oblong in shape and look like mini watermelons to me but the flavor is described as *"similar to that of a honeydew but much sweeter" The Santa Claus melon is also grown in California and Arizonia with the growing season spanning June-October. It is also a variety of Muskmelon. These melons tend to be fairly large and are ripe and ready to eat when they are firm with a small amount of softness at the stem end.
The melon was named the Santa Claus melon for it's ability to keep for a long time, often until Christmas. It can be kept, at room temperature, up to 6 weeks longer than most melon varieties.
The Santa Claus melon is a good source of Dietary Finger and Vitamin C.
Or is it Lemon Drop Melon, I still don't know. Sadly, we already know there is little info out there on this melon. I would describe it as a tangy cross between a honeydew and cantaloupe. It reminds me of the way my grandmother served both of those melons, with a sprinkle of salt on them for tang.
I am unsure of where it is grown, what seasons, or what nutritional value it holds. Since most melons are great sources of Dietary Fiber and Vitamin C I will assume it is as well.
While once again searching for Lemondrop melons I came across a blog where the woman referenced how these melons reminded her of Israel. I do not know if this means they grow or originate in Israel or that they just resemble other melons that do. I found this tiny tidbit intriguing though as these melons are still a mystery to me overall. She also had a yummy recipe to make a refreshing Lemondrop Melon Limonana Sorbet that I would just LOVE to try but not with the melon I bought today, the kids and I already have our hearts set on enjoying it with our lunch here in a bit.
I also came across another blog, For the Love of Peaches that described the flavor of these melons as "sweet honeydew flavor, followed by WOW....... lemon flavor" . I am beginning to really wonder if it is indeed a new melon hybrid made with the cross of a honeydew melon and a lemon.
Orange Flesh Melon-
When I googled "Orange Flesh Melon" the results all called it an "Orange Flesh Honeydew Melon".
Orange Flesh Honeydew Melons can be stored at room temperature for about 4 days and should then be moved to the fridge. They are ripe and ready to eat when they are firm with a small amount of softness at the stem. It has even been reported that *"Sometimes, the seeds of an especially juicy melon will rattle if the melon is shaken. ". The taste is described as a honeydew melon, only sweeter.
They are also of the Muskmelon variety and are good sources of Vitamin B6, Folate Potassium, and Vitamin C.
Orange Flesh Melons are available May through October and grow in California, Arizona and Texas.
I have found flavor descriptions comparing the Canary Melon to both a Cantaloupe and Honeydew melon (and ironically both on Wikipedia in almost the same sentence) *"distinctively sweet flavor that is slightly tangier than a honeydew melon" and then *" The flesh looks like that of a pear but is softer and tastes a little like a cantaloupe." It is a European variety also known as Spanish melon, Juan Canary, Jaune des Canaries and San Juan Canary. The Canary Melon is ripe and ready to eat when the rind turns bright yellow and develops a corrugated look and a slightly waxy feel.
This melon is best stored at room temperature and is known for having a long "shelf life"
Canary Melons are available in California and Arizona and are grown from March to October. They are a great source of Dietary Fiber and Vitamin C.
A Crenshaw melon is a hybrid melon (a cross between a Casaba and Persian Melon) with a very sweet, juicy orange flesh. They are considered to be the sweetest melon variety available. These melons can be stored at room temperature until ripe and then must be stored in the refrigerator, consume within 5 days of melon ripening.
A ripe Crenshaw Melon will be fairly large and firm with a small amount of softness at the stem end. These melons can weigh up to 10 pounds.
They are grown in California and Arizona from June-October.
Crenshaw Melons are an excellent source of Vitamin C
All of the melons (except for the Lemondrop of course) had stickers with the logo from Desert Owl so I decided to google that as well, just to see where the melons came from: The Desert Owl logo is trademarked by Robinson Farms in Blythe, CA. So it looks as if all of these melons grew in California. I try to stick to local produce if at all possible but at least produce grown in the USA so this made me happy to learn.
Growing up my mom rarely bought fruits and vegetables, fresh anyways, so I was unaware that so many varieties of melons existed. I knew there were honeydew, cantaloupe and watermelon. I thought I had made an "exotic" find last summer when I bought some Yellow Flesh Watermelon (which I now love more than regular watermelon, it has a honey taste to it). All of these melons are intriguing me and I cannot wait to try each and every one. I sure hope my store keeps them in stock as I can only afford about 1-2 per week. I will let you all know what I think of each one.
Off to make lunch and enjoy our Lemondrop melon.
this exotic fruit lovin mama,
*All qoutes came from either Wikipedia.com or Produceoasis.com which were both excellent sources on all of the above melons except of course for the Lemondrop, alas no one seems to know anything about these melons.