How to choose a watermelon with the best flavor

When we shop for fruits and vegetables, how many of us look and stick around as long as it takes to find the most visually appealing produce available? I know I can’t be the only one; after all, there are a handful of food brands based on the very premise of giving “ugly” products a fighting chance in the marketplace. (And all this time, we thought the dating market was too selective!)

Now, before everyone’s favorite summer fruit is out of season, we want to let you in on a little secret: You’ll be doing your taste buds a favor (as well as helping to reduce food waste) by choosing the ugliest watermelon of the bunch. —discolorations, dark spots and straps included. Here, My Nguyen, chef and creator of My Healthy Dish, explains why.

How to pick a watermelon: 3 “ugly” signs that indicate a high-quality fruit

According to Nguyen, opting for the ugly watermelon is a surefire way to pick the sweetest watermelon out of the trash. Although she is now a famous foodie, Nguyen says her father taught her this trick when she was a child. “He told me that choosing a sweet watermelon is very easy just by looking at it,” she recalls.

So what exactly constitutes an ugly watermelon? Keep an eye out for these three key indicators of so-called ugliness that actually indicate an abundance of sweetness and flavor.

1. A large yellow spot

Apparently, those of us who seek uniform shades of green in whole watermelons and avoid the ones with yellow spots have been wrong all this time. “You’ll want to look for a big yellow spot, because that’s the part that’s in the sun. The larger the patch, the longer it matured in the ground,” says Nguyen. And as we well know, maximum ripeness means maximum sweet and juicy flavor.

2. Lots of straps

As Nguyen shares in the Instagram video showing off this watermelon hack above, when it comes to straps, the uglier, the better. “Cobweb is caused by bee pollination, so if there are more cobwebs, it will be sweeter,” she explains. Even if he has to do an impromptu arm workout to fetch a watermelon with lots of straps, he’ll find that his efforts will pay off when he comes home, slices and bites into his sweet summer treat.

3. Dark spots

Nguyen then says that he’ll be lucky if he can find a watermelon with a few (or a lot) of dark spots. “These dark spots actually indicate that the sugar is leaking out, which is just another sign that the watermelon is too sweet,” she says.

Food to go

All of this is to say that if you’ve been trying to find the watermelon equivalent of Prince Charming or “a perfect 10,” it’s time to lower your visual standards; a less than beautiful exterior simply masks the fact that it’s what’s inside that counts. (Suddenly I feel like I’m dishing out dating advice…)

“Basically, don’t let the looks fool you and go for the perfect green watermelon,” Ngyuen concludes. “Instead, go for the ugliest you can find.”

Nguyen also adds one final tip worth remembering as you work your biceps in search of the sweetest watermelon in the produce aisle or local farmers market. “The perfect watermelon will be dense and heavy, indicating that it is full of water and not dry,” she says.

Of course, this beloved summer fruit must be as juicy as it is sweet, not only for its flavor and texture, but also for its maximum hydration potential. Don’t forget that watermelon contains up to 92% water, making it one of the most enjoyable and flavorful ways to stay hydrated, whether you’re sweating in the summer sun or battling the air conditioning in your home. small apartment.

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