In addition to traditional desserts — ice cream, sorbet, jelly, jam — from melons You can cook a lot of delicious dishes, and not only sweet.
Melons make great appetizers for an aperitif.
Asia and Africa are considered to be the homeland of the melon, there are even mentions of it in the Day-book of Egypt. In the East sweet melon they composed odes and dedicated poems.
In Europe, melon was also very much appreciated, she was a frequent guest at festive meals and royal tables.
In the autumn ripe melon — one of the most useful gifts of nature. It contains a lot of vitamin C, which will help to resist the autumn colds, and the B vitamins contained in it will save you from autumn blues.
Melon is only slightly inferior to apples in the amount of iron, there is also a lot of magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, and silicon in it.
It also contains lycopene, inosine and other substances that have a positive effect on the condition of the skin and hair and slow down aging.
Melon from antiquity was used for healing. Avicenna treated for gout and colds with melon seeds and crusts, melon pulp was recommended and is still recommended to be eaten more frequently for constipation, liver and bladder diseases.
Modern physicians advise eating melon for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, and nutritionists for cleansing the body from "slags" and toxins, getting rid of edema.
Despite the huge number of cultivated melons, only two or three are sold in central Russia — those that tolerate transportation and long storage well.
In summer and autumn it is «torpedo» and «collective farmer» (they are grown in the Volga and Central Asia).
The fruits of the «torpedo» are sweet, juicy and soft, the «kolkhoznitsa» is less sweet, but more fragrant.
In winter and spring in the supermarkets there are imported nutmeg — fragrant, but even less sweet than the “kolkhoznitsa”.
Other European varieties of melons (including the famous “cantaloupes”) in our country, alas, are infrequent guests.
In addition to traditional desserts — ice cream, sorbet, jelly, jam — you can make a lot of delicious dishes from the melon, and not only sweet ones.
Melons make great appetizers for an aperitif.
In the Mediterranean countries traditionally served with melon with ham: in Spain — with jamon, in Italy — with prosciutto.
Slice the ham into very thin strips. Peel off the seeds of a half-sized medium melon, cut off the peel, cut the pulp into slices.
Each slice of melon a little sprinkle with black freshly ground pepper and wrap a strip of ham.
From melon and mozzarella can make an excellent snack for champagne. Put 20 small mozzarella balls in a bowl, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, juice of half a lemon and a pinch of black pepper and stir. Using a spoon, cut out 20 balls of melon pulp about the same size as mozzarella.
String the melon and mozzarella alternately on a skewer.
Another simple, but very appetizing snack with melon: chop fresh chili pepper, mix half lime and 2 tablespoons of Thai fish sauce with us. 200 g of melon pulp and 200 g of crab sticks cut into medium-sized pieces, put in a bowl and mix. Add a handful of cilantro leaves, pour in the dressing and stir again.
Sprinkle with sesame oil.
If you want something less exotic, chop 300 g melon pulp and 100 g canned pineapple in a blender.
Add 1 teaspoon ground coriander seed and a pinch of salt.
This kind of fruit puree can be served with homemade cottage cheese or soft cheese.
And, of course, do not forget about all sorts of fruit salads: melon goes well with almost all fruits and berries.
The season of melons in our latitudes is the end of summer and the beginning of autumn, August-September.
However, imported can be found in stores almost all year round.
Melon must be clean, without dark spots and cracks.
It is dangerous to buy damaged fruits: pathogenic bacteria — causative agents of salmonellosis and botulism — on their surface multiply very quickly.
Do not buy already cut melons and do not let them cut in front of you.
It is unlikely that the seller has perfectly clean hands, and no one can guarantee for the sterility of the knife.
Feel the scent?
If yes, then ripe melon.
Ripe melon smells like vanilla, pineapple and even pears. If it does not smell anything, or it smells only of greens, no doubt, put off such melon aside.
By the way, the higher the air temperature, the stronger the smell of melon should be.
Therefore, the market in the heat more likely to choose a more ripe melon than in the store.
Some buyers prefer to check the quality of a melon with a slap — if the sound is not ringing, but deaf, then it is ripe.
You can also feel the «nose» of a melon — a trace from a flower. It should be a little soft. If very soft — already overripe, if solid — green.
A «tail» — the trace of the stem at the opposite end of the fruit — in a ripe melon should be dry.
It is said that sweet melon the stem should be thick, and the trail from the flower should be large.
This melon is popularly called the «girl».
However, this is nothing more than a word: from a biological point of view, sharing these fruits by gender is absurd.
During the season, melons are sold almost everywhere, numerous “melon” tents and ruins can be seen in the city at almost every intersection.
In stores, in the markets and in covered «seasonal» tents, special health services monitor the condition of the goods to one degree or another. But sellers of disorder do not always show due honesty.
For example, they sell goods on the sidelines of the highway, which is unacceptable, because melons absorb the heavy metal salts contained in car exhaust perfectly.
According to the rules of trade, melons should be placed on a special pallet (not on the ground!), Under an awning or canopy, and the seller should have a permit from the sanitary-epidemiological station for trading and laboratory control results.
In addition to traditional desserts — ice cream, sorbet, jelly, jam — from melon is possible.
Few know that melon is tasty not only by itself and as part of sweet and fruit desserts.
Melon produces light and delicious appetizers and salads, which are suitable for the festive.