Monday, September 10, 2007

Ode to Watermelon

Citrullus Lanatus 'Quetzali'

Doesn't that look yummy? It was. I wish we'd gotten more of them from our vines this summer. I don't think I'll ever get enough watermelon to satisfy my appetite for it though. Given enough of it, I'm quite sure I could eat it until my belly looked like there was one growing in there. I just love it.

I love the smell it has. It's like the air smells after a rain. It's like the smell of freshly cut grass.

I like how it looks. The smooth stripey green outside, the dense white layer of rind, and the pinky red flesh on the inside, polka-dotted with black seeds just invite you to smell and taste of its goodness.

I love the texture of its fruit. It's not chewy, it's not soft, it's not crispy, it's not gooey. It's sort of a soft, waterlogged crunch and that's the best part of eating it, besides the taste itself. Take a bite and you'll feel your mouth get flooded with its refreshing fruity juice.

And of course there is its delicious flavor. Even a watermelon that isn't quite ripe is still edible. Not as sweet, but still good. Of course, I have been known to eat well into the rind where the fruit has a bit of tartness to it. Some people pickle the rind and though I've never tasted it, I'll bet I'd like that, too.

Watermelon is good for you. It's low in calories, but high in Vitamins A, B6 and C. It has lots of lycopene, too. Only tomatoes have more. It's got a high level of potassium and of course, fiber. That makes watermelon a food that helps fight cardiovascular disease, cancer, high blood pressure, anxiety, and strokes. And it's delicious!

When I was a little girl, I used to sit on the cement cistern at my grandma and grandpa's house and eat a slice of watermelon simply by taking bites right out of it. No silverware was needed. I'd spit the seeds out right on the ground. I'm all grown up now and it's been a long time since I've eaten watermelon that way. Well, before I did it yesterday anyway.

Fun Facts
  • Although it is botanically a fruit, it is a member of the gourd family and closely related to cucumbers, pumpkins, squash, zucchini, etc.

  • Watermelon is believed to have its origin in the Kalahari Desert in South Africa.
  • Watermelon is 92% water and is fat-free.
  • In 1990, Bill Carson, of Arrington, Tennessee, grew the largest watermelon at 262 pounds; it remains on the record books, according to the 1998 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records.
  • Watermelon is the most popular flavor of Jolly Rancher's Candies.
  • Every part of a watermelon is edible, even the seeds and rinds.

  • Richard LeFevre holds the world record for eating Watermelon. He ate 11 1/2 pounds in 15 minutes.
  • Cordele, Georgia claims to be the Watermelon Capital of the world.

Trivia facts from Sundia Corporation and Food Reference.


Alyssa said...

I agree 100% with you. There is just nothing like the taste of a watermelon. I wonder if there is a National Watermelon Day? If not, there should be.

The "Gaiety" cannas you have are very pretty. And I also enjoyed your "seed" blog.

lisa said...

Very informative-thanks!

Cindy Garber Iverson said...

Wow! I love the photos on the post! So amazingly beautiful! Since I can't enjoy the wonderful smell or taste of the watermelon, at least I can look at the pictures and drool. Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, watermelon, I love it, especially on a hot summer's day. Great ode Kylee!

Connie said...

Thanks for the Watermelon 101 facts. :-) Yummy sweet fruit...I like to think of them as 'captured sunshine'.

Katie said...

Mighty beautiful watermelon you got there.

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