We all know I have a strange and deep love affair with melon and love discovering new varieties. Well, here’s my newest wonderful summertime discovery: the Santa Claus melon.
What? Santa? In June? Yep. Apparently it’s also called a Christmas melon because it lasts forever, from when it’s ripe in the summer “until Christmastime” according to produce lore (yes, “produce lore” – although I’d love to see if that statement is actually true given our sizzling hot Texas summers). It did keep in the fridge for about a month, I’ll give it that much – we found this guy at our local Central Market about a month ago and them forgot about him until the other night, when I was digging through the bottom of a drawer in the fridge.
Anyway, this Santa can’t tell if you’ve been naughty or nice, but it can delight your tastebuds. While it kinda looks like a watermelon on the outside, it’s actually from the cantaloupe family and has a similar texture and goopy center of seed pods. I would kind of call it… a honeydew plus cantaloupe combo, super juicy and soft (but not in a gross mealy way).
If you see a Santa Claus melon at your grocery store or farmers market, don’t be intimidated. Take it home and get into the holiday spirit. I just ate it plain but it would be great with some prosciutto and feta, maybe a little mint… okay, too many good ideas, I need to pick up another one!