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Jfood's New Method for Cutting Cantaloupes for Fruit Bowls

jfood Aug 13, 2008 03:55 PM

After witnessing little jfood narrowly miss causing herself some physical damage with the traditional method of preparing melons for a fruit bowl, jfood closed his eyes, put his head back and asked himself if there as a better and safer method. He thinks his new method is safer and so far so good onthe resuts:

Old Method:

1 - slice melon in half
2 - scoop out seeds
3 - slice into wedges
4 - place wedge, skin side down on cutting board
5 - slide boning knife under pulp and above skin
6 - slice skinless wedge into sections

New method:

1 - slice melon in half
2 - scoop out seeds
3 - PLACE MELON HALF FLAT SIDE DOWN ON A CUTTING BOARD
4 - USING A KNIFE REMOVE THE OUTTER SKIN AROUND THE CIRCUMFERENCE, LIKE CUTTING THE PEEL OFF AN ORANGE
5 - SLICE SKINLESS HALF VERTICALLY IN SLICES CREATING "C" SECTIONS
6 - PLACE EACH "C" SECTION FLAT ON THE BOARD AND CUT INTO SECTIONS

This also creates a more similar sized pieces if that is a concern to anyone.

  1. coastie Aug 13, 2008 04:18 PM

    I make flat ends on each end. Then place on one flat end and I trim with chef knife all the way around - I can usually get all of the peel but sometimes I have to flip to other flat end and get some bits of peel that I didn't get due to the curve - and trying to not lose too much flesh. I then split in half - remove seeds and then cut into wedges

    24 Replies
    1. re: coastie
      l
      lattelover Aug 13, 2008 05:00 PM

      I thought I was the only one who did it this way, coastie! What did they say about great minds...... ? It truly makes a lot of sense to do it this way and quite fast too.

      1. re: coastie
        scubadoo97 Aug 13, 2008 05:04 PM

        I also cut the ends off and stand it on one end and cut the peel off from top to bottom as you would an orange/grapefruit prior to sectioning.

        I have even done watermelons this way as well. A big #ss 300mm gyuto does an excellent job of this task.

        1. re: scubadoo97
          goodhealthgourmet Aug 13, 2008 06:40 PM

          it's also the only really effective way to break down a pineapple - slice off the ends, run the knife down the sides to remove the peel, cut the four fleshy sides off the core, lay them flat, and cut into desired slices, cubes, etc.

          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
            jfood Aug 13, 2008 07:02 PM

            that's where jfood got the idea. how you describe is exactly how jfood does p'apple.

            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
              scubadoo97 Aug 14, 2008 08:33 AM

              Yes this is my technique with the pineapple as well.

            2. re: scubadoo97
              TongoRad Aug 14, 2008 06:14 AM

              Put me down for that way as well- for most melons and pineapple. I haven't tackled a watermelon like that, though- it just never occurred to me to even try it. Sounds do-able.

              1. re: scubadoo97
                p
                phantomdoc Aug 14, 2008 06:23 AM

                I have done this with watermelons in the days when I did a lot of juicing (not booze). I would carve off the rind and make rectangular spears that would fit into feed tube of Champion Juicer.
                BTW the cantaloupe seeds can be put in blender to boost nutrition in a smoothie. A whole peeled cantaloupe with seeds makes a great smoothie too.

              2. re: coastie
                Euonymous Aug 13, 2008 05:05 PM

                "and trying to not lose too much flesh." I have to ask: yours or the melon's?

                1. re: Euonymous
                  Veggo Aug 13, 2008 07:34 PM

                  E, depends who one asks; Dr. Hannibal Lecter would have his own opinion.
                  As for pineapples, I frequently have one in the fridge in a descending height, resting upright on a small plate as I slice from the bottom as needed, trim edges, quarter the useful flesh, return to plate. One of few tropical fruits that holds up to refrigeration for a few days, as long as you don't whack it up all at once.
                  As for tasking little people with delivering bite sized portions of melons, go find grandma's melon ball scooper. A bit inefficient, but will enable your kids to count to 10 on their fingers until they get proficient with a calculator..:) And round is easier on the eye; nature still abhors a straight line...

                  1. re: Veggo
                    Gio Aug 14, 2008 05:49 AM

                    Ah, the melon baller. I still use my Grandma's to aesthetical perfection.

                    1. re: Veggo
                      jfood Aug 14, 2008 06:28 AM

                      To be fair, does the melon baller give your a full sphere or does it give a 3/4 moon shape?

                      1. re: jfood
                        Gio Aug 14, 2008 07:54 AM

                        jfood:

                        If when using the melon baller you gently plunge in the scoop, then twirl it completely around in the melon flesh, perhaps several times, you really can achieve perfect roundness.

                        1. re: Gio
                          f
                          foodwich Aug 14, 2008 10:42 AM

                          second that. plus you cant be stingy with a melon baller to get perfect rounds. i feel that i waste quite a bit of melon when i use the baller.

                          1. re: foodwich
                            jfood Aug 14, 2008 11:03 AM

                            Thanks for this foodwich. that's the other issue jfood has with the melon baller. the poor piece of melon looks like the Martian landscape. Then jfood and I sit down and split the remains. :-))

                          2. re: Gio
                            MMRuth Aug 14, 2008 11:12 AM

                            Exactly. And, as foodwich wrote, you do lose a lot of melon in the process, but it's fine cut up for breakfast or a snack, etc.

                            1. re: MMRuth
                              Veggo Aug 14, 2008 03:29 PM

                              I did mention that the melon baller practice is "a bit inefficient", but somehow a serving of multi-colored but otherwise uniformly sized spheres of fruit is easier on the eye than a jagged missmatch of pointy tetrahedrons that is as inviting as a poorly de-boned fish.

                              1. re: Veggo
                                scubadoo97 Aug 14, 2008 03:49 PM

                                How about nice uniform cubes?

                                1. re: scubadoo97
                                  Veggo Aug 14, 2008 04:11 PM

                                  good idea for L.V. or A.C.
                                  Get a little dice game going with the Sambucca...:)

                                  "Oh, cantaloupe, I can't elope without a 7 or 11....pappa needs a new pair of shoes.."

                                2. re: Veggo
                                  jfood Aug 15, 2008 10:12 AM

                                  only two tetrahedron-types per slice, the rest are hexahedron-types.

                                  somehow jfood does think this is what euclid had in mind.

                                  1. re: jfood
                                    Veggo Aug 15, 2008 05:17 PM

                                    jfood, you have absolutely nailed the difference in our preferences. I PG'd in non-Euclidian geometry, which comprises hyperbolas, ellipses, and other soft curves, including saddle-shaped time warps which bend back onto themselves. I am bored by anything linear. And it took the dissection of melons to define the two separate-but-equal camps.
                                    Curious how comfort food and mental planes can be so parallel.

                                    1. re: Veggo
                                      jfood Aug 15, 2008 05:44 PM

                                      comfort food and mental planes should intersect to be more enjoyable. trisect it with the tongue and yum.

                                      1. re: jfood
                                        Veggo Aug 15, 2008 05:52 PM

                                        jfood, got your angle on the trisect; still squaring the circle...getting close..with a smoked amberjack spread, and a nip of Tio Pepe...cheers!

                                  2. re: Veggo
                                    coastie Aug 15, 2008 04:22 PM

                                    For certain occasions the wastefulness and time involved in melon balling are worth it -
                                    Another atractive presentation is to cut into wedges but keep in their original shape - the whole shape can be pushed over - accordian like or spiraled out ( like the traditional strawberry garnish) loose fresh berries or grapes, or kiwi can be loosely poured over to catch in the ridges - or not. Done on plain white or black - just the melon itself can look quite elegant especially if mixed with a honeydew or other melon with a few simple garnishes

                          3. re: Euonymous
                            coastie Aug 13, 2008 10:05 PM

                            lol - the melons

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