Friday, August 19, 2011

sweet thumping

Every year in Luling, Texas there's a Watermelon Thump, where thump equals festival.

Every year I say I want to go and every year I miss it for one reason or another, usually because I forget all about it when the weekend arrives. This year we had just returned from vacation and I opted to stay home and luxuriate in doing nothing.

It's called a watermelon thump for an important reason. Choosing a good watermelon, a ripe melon that isn't overly ripe, is all in the thump. After reading one of my favorite bloggers, Mrs. Brightsides Friday Fast Ones give advice on watermelon selection, I remembered a funny story.

Sam was told by a guy who used to sell watermelons on the side of the road that it's all in the stripes. Pick a melon with stripes that blend and blur into each other rather than distinct stripes.

One day earlier in the summer I finally remembered this advice. Came home ready to see if the proof was in the melon. Sam picked it up and asked, Did you feel this?! All accusatory like.

Turns out one end was soft and squishy like a nerf ball. Rotten on one end. Over ripe. I was so busy looking at stripes that I didn't feel the damned thing. BFD. Where D = Duh. I could have kicked myself.

With these:

So when I read Mrs. Brightside, I was curious and went to youtube. Watched a slew of experts (produce managers, farmers, Ag extension service dudes). None mentioned stripes. Only one mentioned color but it was general, bright color recommended rather than dull.

They all mentioned the thump, however. Hollow, echo sound to the thump. Dull thud means over ripe. They also said to pick one with a yellow resting spot, not white.

And? The hotter the weather the sweeter the melon. Silver lining given the summer we're having. Last week we beat the previous record of 21 consecutive days of triple digit temperatures with 27 days.

So, as it turns out, now's the perfect time to get out there and thump. There's some sweet watermelon waiting.


hokgardner said...

I've always wanted to go, too. But the heat is the turn off for me. And the crowds. I don't like crowds.

Yesterday my neighbor started to cut into a watermelon she bought at CM, and foam started coming out. When she told me, I thought she was joking. Then she showed me - lots of bright white, sticky foam.

She dubbed it the unholy melon and opted not to eat it.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Aha! Thanks for the info on good watermelons...the thump. Will remember that!

Jodi Pharo said...

Have not had a really good watermelon all summer. I think I need to get thumping.

smalltownme said...

I do the thump too. I don't know where I learned that.

Jennifer Denise Ouellette said...

I thump.

Tammy said...

Watermelon is absolutely my favorite summertime food! And I thump away!

Anonymous said...

I'm not really a big fan of watermelon, to be honest. The taste is a little wishy-washy for my liking, and I've never thought they had much nutritional value (although, a quick Wikipedia read suggests otherwise). I'm more of a cantaloupe girl.

That Janie Girl said...

I can never THUMP right. I still don't have it down...