Galia Melons and Charentais Melon
The Galia is one exception to the rule that good melons only come in late summer and fall. This impact is fairly new to Americans introduced to us by Israel. Galias are now grown in California, Chile, most southern U.S. states, along with Costa Rica and Panama. Any place that grows good melons can grow Galias. Color and fragrance not softness at the stem end indicates ripeness. Great fragrance is a hallmark of a good melon. Galia melons are not picked unless they're mature and have a high sugar content.
Peak season for the Costa Rica Galias is usually between January and March. Israel season peak is November through March with January and February the key months. Galias basically look like cantaloupes but the rind is much more golden and the flesh is an appealing pale green, has a texture more like that of a honeydew. They're also very costly - a Galia the size of a cantaloupe goes for $3.50 to $4.00 in most markets. But I figure you have two choices, you can spend $1.99 and get a tasteless, out-of-season melon or you can spend $4.00 and get something that's good to eat.
Galias left at room temperature to me have a better taste, but once cut, wrap good and refrigerate.
CHARENTAIS MELON AKA FRENCH CANTALOUPE. THE CHARENTAIS IS A PETITE-SIZED MELON WITH A SMOOTH, HARD, GREY- GREEN RIBBED SKIN. IT'S FLESH IS DEEP ORANGE, DENSE, SMOOTH AND SWEET SIMILAR TO THAT OF A CANTALOUPE. IT'S PETITE SIZE IS PERFECT FOR 1/2 SIZE SERVING. WHEN RIPE IT IS HIGHLY FRAGRANT WITH TROPICAL FRUIT AND FLORAL NOTES. ITS DELICIOUS FLAVOR AND POWERFUL AROMA MUST BE APPRECIATED AT THE HEIGHT OF MATURITY AS IT HAS A DELICATE AND SHORT SHELF LIFE. THE CHARENTAIS MELON CAN BE USED IN FRESH OR RAW PREPARATIONS, BOTH SWEET AND SAVORY. CHARENTAIS CAN BE USED AS A BREAKFAST FRUIT AND SALAD INGREDIENT, AND MAKES A GREAT ADDITION TO BOTH DRINKS AND DESSERTS. SO ENJOY THESE WINTER MELONS FROM TROPICAL COSTA RICA.
Melon with Cinnamon Syrup
Other recipes from Produce Pete.