Crazy for Cantaloupe
Cantaloupe was introduced to Europe in the 15th century and became a popular fruit due to its sweetness. The US cantaloupe is frequently called muskmelon. Today, they are produced in California, Arizona, and Texas and are available throughout the year but the harvesting season peaks in the summer. It takes cantaloupes 3-4 months to grow before they are mature enough to be picked. When choosing a cantaloupe use your nose – pick the cantaloupe that has a sweet smell. Be advised…cantaloupe does not ripen after it is picked, so once a cantaloupe is removed from the vine it will not sweeten any further. Many people believe that allowing the cantaloupe to ripen on a countertop will increase the sweetness, but it’s just not true! Cantaloupe should not sit at room temperature for more than 4 days.