Scientific name: Solanum muricatum. Some common names include pepino, melon, pear, sweet cucumber (pepino dulse), and melon bush.
Cantaloupe is a juicy, delicious, pleasantly aromatic berry that grows in the foothills of the Andes Mountains in South America. It belongs to the nightshade or nightshade family, the same family as tomatoes, eggplants and peppers.
This little-known fruit is naturally adapted to the low-lying forests of the Andes in Peru, Colombia and Bolivia. In the United States, California produces them on a commercial scale, but their production is limited to local consumption. More recently, New Zealand and Australia have grown them for export purposes.
Melon eggplant is an annual semi-dense small shrub, about 1-2 meters high. It grows well in well-drained loam soil and a frost-free climate. Its dark green, elongated leaves are similar to the pepper plant, but larger in size.
The pale blue flowers bloom and develop into fruits in 30-50 days. Fruits come in all colors, shapes and sizes. It is generally light yellow, with a smooth surface and purple spots. It is oval to elongated in shape, about the size of a small orange, and weighs 300-500 grams. The inside is smooth and juicy, and the creamy-textured flesh is sweet and has a flavor reminiscent of honeydew melon. The seeds are edible.
Over the past few decades, there has been a renewed interest in bromeliad cultivation in the Andean region and in several other countries, as bromeliads are considered a crop with the potential to diversify horticultural production. It is an evergreen shrub propagated vegetatively via stem cuttings and prized for its edible fruits. The fruit is juicy, rich in fragrance, slightly sweet, and can be white, cream, yellow, maroon or purple in color, sometimes with purple stripes when ripe, and can be spherical, conical, heart-shaped or angular in shape.
In addition to its attractive morphological characteristics, Capsicum annuum fruits possess antioxidant, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, and antitumor activities. The fruit has been traditionally used as a remedy for diabetes, hypertension, and inflammatory stomatitis. It has many health benefits, including treating diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, heartburn (indigestion), cancer, kidneys, constipation and hemorrhoids. Melon and Solanum represent fruits with high antioxidant capacity and may contribute significantly to dietary antioxidant intake. Although there is impressive variation in varieties and cultivation types of Melon Solanum, its evergreen and easily propagated habit from stem cuttings provides good scope for its introduction in different suitable regions of the world.
Nutritional facts of pineapple melon
Serving Size Per Meal 125 g Energy 79 Joules 19 Kcal Protein 0.81 g Carbohydrates 4.54 g Sugar 2.09 g Fat 0.14 g Saturated fat 0.042 g Polyunsaturated fat 0.066 g Monounsaturated fat 0.004 g Cholesterol 0 mg Fiber 0.6 g Sodium 2 mg Potassium 184 mg
Health benefits of cantaloupe and eggplant
Melon and eggplant are low-calorie fruits that are rich in healthful phytonutrients, dietary fiber, minerals and vitamins.
Science has found that the antioxidants in melon and eggplant have anti-inflammatory, skin-protective properties and may help prevent cancer.
Melon and nightshade contain phenolic compounds such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin. Zeaxanthin helps protect the retina from age-related macular disease (ARMD) by filtering harmful UV rays, especially in older adults. In addition to beta-carotene, it also contains average levels of vitamin A and lutein and other flavonoid antioxidants. Collectively, these pigment compounds were found to have antioxidant properties and are involved in night vision as well as maintaining healthy mucous membranes, skin, and bones. Eating natural vegetables and fruits rich in flavonoids is known to help prevent lung and oral cancers.
Fresh fruits contain moderate amounts of vitamin C. Eating foods rich in vitamin C helps the body build resistance to infectious agents and scavenge harmful free radicals.
Fresh melon is a good source of potassium. Potassium is an important component of cells and body fluids and helps control sodium-induced heart rate and blood pressure.
In addition, they contain average levels of important B vitamins such as thiamine, niacin, folate and riboflavin, as well as some minerals such as phosphorus, iron, calcium, manganese and trace elements.
In traditional medicine, melon and nightshade are believed to have anti-rheumatic properties. It is also thought to be useful in treating respiratory infections and various skin problems.
Select and save
In the United States, freshly harvested cantaloupe and eggplant hit local markets in June. They come in different colors and sizes. Choose jackfruit that is bright, firm, complete, and has a light aroma.
If you purchase ripe but unripe cantaloupe eggplants, store them at room temperature to allow them to ripen. They can last up to a week. Once ripe, use them early or place them in the refrigerator for a day or two.
Preparation and serving methods
Wash the fruit in clean running water before use. Unripe pineapple melons are processed like pumpkins, and ripe pineapple melons are processed like honeydew melons. Ripe and semi-ripe cantaloupe eggplants have a crunchy texture and taste like apples with the skin on. If it is a ripe cantaloupe, the skin will become hard like a tomato and it is best to discard it.
To prepare, discard stems and top calyx ends. Cut the fruit in half lengthwise with a paring knife. Use a spoon to scoop out the seed-filled cavities. The seeds are edible. Then cut into segments or wedges. Ripeness is not only rich in flavor and aroma, but also enjoyable.
As a member of the nightshade family, muskmelon nightshade may cause allergic reactions in some sensitive individuals. Common reactions include itchy skin and eyes, runny nose (allergic rhinitis), and gastrointestinal upset such as stomach pain, vomiting, and diarrhea. Stomach pain may be self-limiting. People who are intolerant to cantaloupe and eggplant may have cross-allergic reactions to other solanaceous plants such as eggplant, tomatoes, peppers, etc. It is recommended to consult their family doctor.