Everybody loves a good slice of watermelon. You can never really get enough of that deep red almost crystal flesh that’s crispy, sweet, and refreshing. But knowing how to choose a watermelon in a crate full of these giant green orbs can pose as a problem for those who aren’t experienced.
There’s no real way to know if it’s ready unless you cut it open. And just like the sales saying goes, “if you break it, you buy it.” We wouldn’t like that now, would we? Here are some tips and tricks to help you pick a good watermelon.
Look for a yellowy-brown stem
The best-tasting watermelon will have a yellowy-brown stem, indicating that it has been ripened on the vine, which will give it the chance to soak up nutrients and mature in flavor.
A watermelon that has been picked too early, on the other hand, will have a green stem – and it’ll have less sweetness and overall flavor.
Knock on the watermelon
It might look a little stranger to passers-by, but hey, knocking on a watermelon proves you’re truly an expert.
You need to listen for a deep hollow sound – that’s the ripe watermelon sound. If the sound isn’t hollow, it’s likely that the rind – the ring of white stuff that surrounds the fruit beneath the skin – is too thick.
Look for dry, weathered spots
When picking watermelon, look for spots on the outside of the watermelon that is grey and black, textured and rough to the touch.
These spots are actually a good sign – they indicate that the watermelon has spent enough time on the vine, and the inside will be extra-sweet.
Look for stripes when you choose a watermelon
First off, look for a watermelon that has a strong and consistent stripey pattern.
If it’s just one color, it probably won’t be very tasty. The green should be deep, dark, and rich, and the pale stripes should be creamy, pale yellow.
Look for the spot
Yellow spots in watermelon can be an indicator as well. At the base of the fruit, look for a large, pale spot that indicates how it sat on the ground.
Make sure that the spot is the same pale, creamy yellow color as the pale stripes across the skin of the fruit.
The rounder, the sweeter
If you’re a fan of sweet watermelon (and who isn’t?), this is something to remember. The rounder, ball-shaped watermelons tend to be sweeter than the oval-shaped fruits.
When are watermelons in season? You can buy the best watermelons from around May to September. This is when they’ll taste the nicest.
You might find watermelons at a supermarket out of season, but they won’t taste as good as the locally-grown in-season stuff.
Check for “give”
When you choose a watermelon, make sure the outside isn’t too firm. It should have a little bit of “give” when you press against it. If it’s too tough on the outside, it won’t taste as nice.
Choosing the right fruit is something we should all know especially since it’s a skill concerning food. And when it comes to natural food products, knowing the best kind will always be to your advantage. With these tips and tricks, you now know how to pick a watermelon at the store!