Food EducationHealth

5 Tricks For Picking The PERFECT Watermelon Every Time!

Image to the right via Phera Laster/Flickr

I constantly seem to find myself educating people on how to pick the perfect watermelon. When I’m at the grocery store, looking through the watermelon bins, I’m often encountered by numerous individuals asking what I’m looking for.

In fact, picking the perfect watermelon isn’t as hard as it may seem. It may take a little searching at the grocery store, but the end result is that you’ll have a delicious, sweet, dark red, and hard-fleshed watermelon time and time again.

Using these tricks for picking the perfect watermelon will ensure that your fruit is perfectly ripe and ready to eat. Consuming fruit that is ripe and ready will ensure better absorption and digestibility, thereby delivering maximum nutrients to the cells in your body.

The health benefits of watermelon are numerous as well, making it the perfect fruit to eat almost any time of the year (although summer time is prime watermelon time! I almost always avoid picking up melons from the grocery store in winter).

Watermelon can help with improving cardiovascular and bone health (thanks to lycopene), and the citrulline content helps reduce the accumulation of fat in our fat cells. Watermelon is also incredibly rich in antioxidants, which help reduce inflammation and neutralize free radicals.

The kidneys benefit from watermelon consumption as well. Watermelon is a natural diuretic, which helps increase the flow of urine, and gets rid of any excess sodium retention in the body (good-bye pesky water weight!).

Tips on Picking The PERFECT Watermelon Every Time

Enough with the health benefits of watermelon, here are 5 ways to pick the perfect watermelon every time! Combine all 5 tips and you’ll have the most delicious watermelon you’ve ever tried!

1. Yellow Spot

Most people know this tip, and that is looking for a yellow spot on the watermelon. This is also known as a field spot, and it is a light coloured patch that indicates where the watermelon was laid on the ground. It develops as the fruit ripens, so if the field spot is very small, or not even visible, don’t even think about buying that melon (the fruit was picked waaaaay before it was ready to be, meaning that it definitely is not ripe or sweet enough). The perfect watermelon will have a large, dark yellowish field spot.

2. Webbing

Have you ever seen webbing on watermelons? It might look like a thick, brown, course material that spreads out like a spiders web on one side of the melon. This means your watermelon is going to taste delicious. The webbing is created as a result of bee pollination in the early stages. The more pollination, the sweeter the fruit will be, and the more webbing you’ll see.

3. Black Spot

This one usually deters people from buying the watermelon, when in fact it can be a tell-tale sign that the watermelon is going to be ridiculously sweet and delicious. If you see small, hard, black globs seeping out of your watermelon, it is simply concentrated sugars seeping out of your watermelon, which indicates sweetness! I always go for the watermelons with hard black globs – they’re a great sign your watermelon will taste extra sweet!

4. Weight & Size

When picking a watermelon (or any melon for that matter), be sure to pick one that feels heavy for its size. The riper the watermelon, the heavier it will feel. Also, try to pick melons that are average-sized, instead of teeny-tiny ones (which likely haven’t had the time to ripen), or massive ones (which have likely over-ripened, and now have softer flesh on the inside).

5. Sound

This one trick is fool-proof. It is the number one tip I go for when choosing a delicious watermelon. All you have to do is pick up a watermelon, hold it close to your ear, and knock on it at the same time. If it makes a hollow sound (almost as though you are listening to high-pitch vibrations in water), then it’s a sure sign that the watermelon is ripe and ready. If the melon, however, makes a sound that sounds “full” (a deep-pitched, dense-sounding vibration that isn’t “light”) – it is not ready yet.

The knocking technique may take awhile to get used to, but it is a sure-fire way to make sure your watermelon is perfect (just remember – higher pitched is better, whereas more dense, lower-pitched is not as optimal). I use this method all the time, and whenever I cut into the watermelon it nearly explodes with how much water pressure is inside! I barely touch the knife to the outer shell and BAM! It just pops right open – now that’s a good watermelon!

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