MARKET MATES – ROCK ON
THEY’RE IN STOCK, SWEET AND DELICIOUS!
Rockmelons are the same as cantaloupes, named after the Italian town of Cantalupo where melon crops originated. Rockmelons are grown all year round in Australia which is awesome news for melon fans.
Like pumpkins and zucchinis, rockmelons grow on trailing vines. The fruit takes about 3 to 4 months to mature and are ready for harvesting when the stalk near the melon begins to wither making it easy for the fruit to be pulled off.
A mature rockmelon has a delicious sweet aroma. When choosing a rockmelon, choose fruit that has that mouth-watering fragrance, one that feels heavy for its size, and one that is firm with no soft spots. Rockmelons can be stored at room temperature but once cut, should be covered in plastic wrap, kept in the fridge and eaten as soon as possible.
A word of caution: harmful bacteria can thrive on the rough surface of rockmelons (there have been salmonella outbreaks in the US), so it is best to wash & scrub them thoroughly before cutting. There haven’t been any similar outbreaks in Australia, but washing all produce is best practice.
Even with their sweet, divine taste, rockmelons still have considerable nutritional value. Rockmelons provide:-
- Dietary fibre
- Vitamin A – antioxidant, maintaining healthy skin
- Vitamin C – support for the immune system
- Potassium – helps lower blood pressure
- High water content – good for hydration
- Adenosine – a compound that helps prevent blood clotting
Rockmelons can be eaten alone or added to salads. The flesh can be diced, sliced, cubes or cut into wedges. There many ways to add rockmelon into your diet and here are a few other options:
- Cut the rockmelon in half, remove the seeds, place yoghurt and berries in the centre;
- Wrap pieces of prosciutto around wedges of rockmelon – great party snack.
- Use a melon scoop to form balls and thread alternate pieces of folded prosciutto, bocconcini and rockmelon on skewers.
- Cut rockmelon into 2cm slices/wedges and BBQ for 1-2 minutes on each side; serve with bacon and eggs.
- Make a Rockmelon Slushie on a HOT day – blend 3 cups ice, 2 cups rockmelons chunks, ½ cup watermelon chunks, ¼ cup orange juice & 1 tablespoon honey.
- Keep the kids happy with Rockmelon & Yoghurt Pops.