We love trying new produce, especially pulling stuff off the exotic fruits stand at Wegman’s and giving it a whirl. While I love eating local, a global economy gives us the opportunity to try things that never would have been possible in the past – unless we were royalty, which we are far from.
Elizabeth likes to choose the fruits, and this time, she choose an orange, spiky thing that I didn’t recognize and had absolutely no idea to eat. Upon doing some research, we discovered it was called a kiwano melon.
A kiwano melon can just be sliced in half and the pulp and seeds scooped out and eaten, added to a smoothie. or slurped up with a straw. Well, for a 5-year-old, one must eat from the fruit shell – and with a straw if at all possible!
So I let her go to it, giving half of the fruit to Paul who was more concerned with the birds out the window than with the fruit, which was ok. Elizabeth experimented with the straw, but having a little difficulty sucking them up, decided to scoop them out, then suck them up. She may have also been planning on removing the seeds from the pulp, which you can also do if you aren’t terribly impressed with them, but I don’t think she got that far…
Elizabeth was very excited about trying the kiwano melon, and as she scooped and played in the goo, she asked all sorts of questions about where it came from and why it had spikes on it, and if it grows on a tree or on the ground. Deciding that now is better than any other time to look into it, I did a search to find out. Wikipedia came up as the most informational and first source, so that’s where I turned. Follow this link to read more about this interesting fruit.
I found out that being a member of the cucumber and melon family, kiwano melons grow on a vine. This spiky fruit originates in Africa, including being one of the few sources of water during the dry season in the Kalahari Desert. It has a number of other names, including horned melon, and our favorite, the blowfish fruit.
Eating a kiwano melon with children is lots of fun and an educational way to explore new foods and the world right here in our own kitchen.
Share your thoughts: Describe your experience eating a kiwano melon?