05 Jul Summer, sweet melon season
One of the essential gastronomic experiences of the summer is to enjoy the melon that is grown in Ibiza. The particular characteristics of the island soil and the intensity of the sun give this fruit an unusual sweetness and a texture so watery that it is hardly found in other latitudes. In Es Torrent we take advantage of this characteristic quality to pair it with Iberian ham, in a dish that is already a classic of gastronomy and an icon of what the Japanese call “umami”, the most balanced of the basic flavors, a step above the sweet, the acid, the bitter and the salty. We also serve it as a dessert to customers who request it. When a product is excellent, it does not require more dressings.
The cultivation of melon is a tradition on the island and the Ibizans have always tried to have the best seeds, to produce fruits of good size and maximum sweetness and juiciness. A good melon is capable of perfume an entire house and this intense aroma is one of the peculiarities of some of the varieties that are made on the island.
The most important native variety is the so-called melon “eriçó”, with a rounded and flattened shape at the ends, green skin and an intricate grid on the surface. Its name is due to its similarity with the shape of the shell of the sea urchin when the barbs have fallen off. It also stands out for its sweetness and aroma, rapid maturation and a short shelf life that forces you to consume it almost immediately. Its flesh is orange.
The yellow melon, on the other hand, is the most abundant at this time of year and maintains the same characteristics of sweetness and aroma, although we have already seen that its skin has another tone, being also smooth, with some green spot, and its size is noticeably higher, although some mature small. The greater the amount of water received, the larger the size. The meat, very watery, is of a much more yellow, almost white tone. This melon is also enjoyed in July and August and is harvested in full maturation.
The green melon, toad skin type, is also grown in numerous farms on the island and an equally intense sweetness is achieved, although its meat, also whitish, has a more crunchy and less watery texture. This melon, stored in a cool and dry place, often even hung inside a net, is preserved until winter, and can be enjoyed at Christmas.
The varieties, in any case, are many and all equally spectacular. No one should leave Ibiza without trying the local melon.