How to CookCantaloupe

Uses for an Unripe Cantaloupe

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There are so many great conversations on the Hotline -- it's hard to choose a favorite. But we'll be doing it, once a week, to spread the wealth of our community's knowledge -- and to keep the conversation going.

Today: Your unripe melon isn't destined for the compost bin after all.


Uses for an Unripe Cantaloupe, From Food52


Melons can be tricky. With no clear external cue for ripeness, it can be hard to tell when you have a perfectly ripe melon. One sign to look for is a large yellowish-brown patch where the melon was resting on the soil (this lets you know it’s been growing for awhile), and cantaloupes give off a strong sweet smell when they’re ripe. But sometimes you still slice into a melon and are met with not-quite-ripe flesh.

This week NLS was stuck with an unripe cantaloupe and turned to the Hotline for help. Here are some of our favorite ideas from the thread so far:

  • Turning it into a soup -- with mangos, or a white gazpacho with grapes and almonds.
  • Making a melon jam or chutney.
  • Using it as a thick base for a smoothie, or blending it with lime juice and honey for cantaloupe agua fresca.
  • Grilling the melon with a touch of salt to bring out its sweetness, from AniQuadros.

What are your favorite ideas for using unripe cantaloupes? Add your two cents to the question on the Hotline here or continue the conversation in the comments below!

Tags: Melon, Community, Advice, DIY Food, How-To & Diy, Hotline, Best Question