How To: Pick a Cantaloupe

cantloupe

 

 

In follow up to my last post about picking a watermelon, I wanted to share my secrets for picking a ripe, juicy, tender cantaloupe.

Again, I get my “expertise” from working at a produce stand at a farmers’ market for years.  I have passed my techniques on to my boyfriend who has now picked several deliciously ripe melons! 🙂

Picking a cantaloupe is not as tricky as a watermelon. Here are my secrets:

  1. First you will look at the rind. You will want this to be a yellowish/salmon color or hue. It should not be green or tan. The more yellow/salmon the rind, the better.
  2. Next you will want to give the melon a few squeezes as you rotate it around. You want there to be some give to the rind. It should not be hard. You also do not want your melon to be so soft that you can almost break through the rind if you squeezed hard enough.  Just a nice give to the rind will do.
  3. And lastly, you are going to smell what I call the “butt” of the cantaloupe. It is going to be the end of the cantaloupe where they pulled if off of the stem. When you smell this part of the cantaloupe it should have a sweet cantaloupe smell. The stronger the scent, the riper the cantaloupe will be.

The ripest cantaloupes are going to have all 3 of these characteristics. You will find some cantaloupes that have the color, but not the give or smell. Some will have the give but not the smell, etc.

You can sometimes walk away with a good cantaloupe that has the color and give, but not a strong melon smell.

Of course, this all depends on your liking for cantaloupe. We like ours to be juicy, tender (but not mushy necessarily), and sweet! Some people prefer their cantaloupes a little harder in consistency. If that is the case, you will not want to pick a melon with a lot of give.

We have found that athena cantaloupes have produced good results. These melons tend to be much larger than regular cantaloupes so you will feel that you get more bang for your buck! They tend to have a slightly harder exterior so dont let that fool you. They will have the smell and the yellow color. Every one we have gotten has been so ripe and sweet!

Hopefully you will find these tips useful! Happy pickin’ ♥

Weight Watchers Friendly Pizza

Last night my boyfriend and I fixed a recipe I made up awhile back. We started Weight Watchers a few months ago so we occasionally try a new dish to break up the monotony of diet eating. The good thing about WW is that we really are free to eat what we want, but we try to make healthier choices where we can. This would be one of those choices.

Sure we could have ordered Papa John’s and eaten it at 6pts per slice, but where is the fun in that?!

What you will need for this pizza:

  • Whole wheat flour tortillas (we buy the 8 pack and get 2 batches out of it)
  • 14 oz jar of pizza sauce (pick your favorite brand. You should get 2 uses out of a jar)
  • Kraft Fat Free Mozzarella cheese
  • 16oz package Sweet Italian turkey sausage (highly suggest Weis brand! Its our favorite. They tend to keep it in the back so if you don’t see it, ask!)
  • Pam cooking spray
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 medium orange pepper
  • Minced garlic

Cooking Instructions:

  • Preheat over to 400º F.
  • Cut up turkey sausage into 1in. pieces (can adjust the size to your liking. We like ours a little thick).
  • Brown turkey sausage in medium saucepan.
  • While turkey is cooking, cut up onion and pepper and put aside.
  • Once turkey is browned, put in separate container and set aside.
  • Saute onions and peppers together.
  • While waiting for veggies to get tender, take 2 tortillas and spray both sides with Pam cooking spray. Place in oven. Be careful to check often so they do not burn.
Chi-Chis-Whole-Wheat-Tortilla

This is the brand we typically use

  • Put roughly 2 tbsp. of pizza sauce in the center of the tortilla and work out to the edges in a circular motion.
IMG_1107

This what it should look like when you are finished

  • Sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on top of the sauce.
Yummm cheese!

Yummm cheese!

  • Place topping mixture on top of cheese by the spoonful to your liking
I like to be a little generous with the toppings :)

I like to be a little generous with the toppings 🙂

  • Sprinkle more mozzarella cheese on top of the mixture (if you want to be good/healthy, you may not use as much cheese as us)
Once again...being generous lol

Once again…being generous lol

  • Place 2 tortillas with toppings on round pizza tray and put in the oven until cheese is fully melted (roughly 3-5 min depending on how much cheese you used)
When they are finished they should look something like this

When they are finished they should look something like this

  • Let cool for a few minutes, then cut into 4’s with a pizza cutter
  • Stuff your face!! ♥

Hopefully you enjoy these as much as we do. Regardless, it makes for a fun time in the kitchen. This is pretty easy for kids to help out as well 🙂