Do you plan to visit Chile, Peru, Columbia, California, or Bolivia soon and can’t wait to enjoy the local fruits and vegetables? If yes, we recommend you try the Pepino melon.
This fruit is one-of-a-kind and gives you the taste of heaven with every bite. Pepino means sweet cucumber, which tastes like cantaloupe, honeydew, and cucumber. The fruit’s texture resembles a pear and has yellow or golden skin when fully ripe.
If you find the introduction mouthwatering, keep reading as we explore more about the taste of Pepino melon and different ways to eat it.
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What Is Pepino Melon?
Once only found in Peru, Pepino melon is available in a few countries, such as California, Bolivia, New Zealand, and Chile. It originates from South America and is often mentioned through other names such as melon pear and sweet cucumber.
Unfortunately, the fruit isn’t available in many countries because it is pretty sensitive and gets ruined during transportation.
This small fruit with smooth, firm skin and an oval shape turns yellow as soon as it ripens. The skin features beautiful purple stripes that make this melon stand out.
The fruit grows on a Pepino bush. This bush is a ground cover plant that lives for many years. The shrub grows naturally and attracts fruit-loving pests, encouraging the growth of Pepino melon.
One of the top qualities of this fruit is that it doesn’t get wasted. In addition, Pepino tastes pretty fabulous.
How Does Pepino Melon Taste?
Have you seen a Pepino melon in a market and wondered what this fruit tastes like? Let us kill your curiosity.
Imagine a pear that tastes like cantaloupe, honeydew, and sweet cucumber, all at the same time. That’s what Pepino melon tastes like.
This fruit has a texture quite similar to a pear and tastes like a mild sweet melon. The taste is light and refreshing, and it's best to enjoy it when fully ripe.
Its skin is also edible, and the flesh has a distinct smell and flavor of vanilla.
Other than taste, Pepino melon is a healthy fruit, and it's best to consume it after dinner. It has a balanced amount of carbs, proteins, and dietary fibers.
Additionally, it contains lots of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Pepino melon reduces cancer risk and keeps your skin healthy.
This fruit also maintains blood pressure and heart rate. Natives have used Pepino melon to treat skin ailments, rheumatic symptoms, and various respiratory problems.
Picking the Right Melon
If you haven’t bought a Pepino melon before, you may make a mistake when picking it for the first time. Here are some of the tips that may help you save your money.
- Pepino melon may look like an egg or pear. But what matters more is the color between the purple streaks on the skin. You may have a ripe melon if the color is gold or deep yellow. However, if the area is green, it indicates an unripe fruit.
- You shouldn’t look for Pepino melons before late autumn to the middle of spring. If you find this melon in other seasons, know they aren’t of good quality or fresh.
- Have you seen a ripe plum? When selecting a Pepino melon, look for similar softness and appearance. Pick a Pepino melon that is both glossy and fragrant. The selected melon should also slightly yield to pressure.
How to Use Pepino Melon
Since the flavor of this fruit is quite sweet and distinct, there are many ways to use it. For example, add them to your spinach and fruit salads or eat them individually with sprinkled lemon or chili powder.
Before you plan to consume this fruit, ensure to wash it properly. To enjoy the melon as a treat, chill it properly before eating.
Although Pepino's skin is edible, it is unpalatable. So, peel it properly if you want to add this fruit to a platter with other fresh goodies.
Another way to use this fruit is to serve it as a side with your grilled meat. Then, drizzle some lime juice and lemon over it for a nice tangy flavor.
This melon also tastes excellent in various dips, such as salsa. Simply bake or poach it and mix it with a few chunks of salty cheese.
Do you fancy Pepino melons for breakfast? Try using the slices of this fruit as a topping for your cereals. You can also add some seeds, nuts, cheese, and honey to make a complete and nutritious bowl.
Elevate your cooking game by chargrilling the fruit. Drizzle the chargrilled fruit with some honey, serve it with ice cream, and enjoy it as a tempting sweet dish.
Store the Melon
If you can’t eat the whole fruit in one go, it is safe to store it. The unripe Pepino melon can easily ripe under room temperature. You can then refrigerate the ripe melon for a maximum of three days.
Once you have sliced the melon, be careful with its storage. Use plastic wrap to cover all the cut sides pretty tightly. Once that’s done, refrigerate the fruit for two to three days.
Pepino melon might be a new fruit for you, but believe us that this creation is worth every bite. The fruit tastes like honeydew, cantaloupe, and sweet cucumber, which makes your taste buds dance with joy.
If you haven’t bought the fruit before, spot it with its yellow skin and purple streaks. Its pear-like structure also makes it different from all the other similar fruits.
Finally, to enjoy it to the fullest, add it to salads or enjoy raw slices. You can also serve the fruit slices as a side with beef. Either way, the Pepino melon will make you feel light and refreshed.
Pepino Melon FAQs
Can Pepino be eaten raw?
Yes, you can consume the fruit just like an apple or a pear. Both its skin and the inner flesh are edible. It also has a few edible soft seeds.
What is Pepino melon good for?
Pepino melon reduces all risks related to stress and hypertension. It also prevents diabetes. The melon is helpful for those with reduced stamina levels.
When should you eat Pepino?
Enjoy the melon when it has turned yellow and exhibits purple stripes. As the fruit ripens, you may notice a fragrant smell. This means that it is ready for you to eat it.