Wandering through the vegetable garden sometimes make me anxious. There is always so much to do and remember. Prune the tomatoes, check the tomatoes to see if they are ripe, pick the ripe tomatoes, find something to do with the excess tomatoes, find someone to give the extra tomatoes to. I think you get my drift. This year the harvest is coming on strong. Although a bit slower because of our cool start, now is the time I worry about how things are starting to get ripe, if they will make it before the cool weather starts, keeping things watered without splitting or molding. One of my worries however, is not the Cucamelons.
Apparently this is the new ‘hot’ exciting vegetable. The little sour Mexican Gherkin (Cucamelon) is first of all cute, then easy to grow, and finally fun to experiment with. Last year I only got about 5 on my vines. This year I have many! I think the key was giving them something to climb. One of my favorite cookbook authors, Kristy Gardner from SheEats.com has a great recipe for Cucamelon Bruschetta. You should seriously click HERE to get the full recipe it’s worth it.
- 1½ cups white vinegar – distilled malt or white wine
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 tbsp raw sugar
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint
- 1tsp coriander seeds
- 9 oz fresh cucamelons
- 1 fresh grape leaf or oak leaf
Pour the vinegar into a bowl and add salt and sugar, then whisk until they have completely dissolved. Stir in the dill, mint and coriander seeds.
Wash the cucamelons in water and pour into a sterilized jar. (Run the jars through the dishwasher and dry in a warm oven set to its lowest temperature.)
Scrunch up the grape or oak leaf and place it on top of the cucamelons. The tannins in the leaf will slowly disperse outwards and help keep the fruit crisp.
Pour the seasoned vinegar into the jar and seal tightly.
Refrigerate for 2 weeks. The cucamelons will be pickled and ready to eat. Once opened, store in the refrigerator. They will keep up to 3 months, but most likely won’t last nearly that long! Yields about 1 quart.
Days to Emerge:
Melon Cucamelon Mouse Melon HEIRLOOM Seeds
90 days. Cute, grape-sized fruits look like tiny watermelons but have a cucumber flavor, often with a hint of tartness. Also called sandita or Mexican sour gherkin because the fruits turn more sour as they mature. Long vines up to 10′ produce plenty of “watermelons” to harvest from summer to fall. Plants don’t seem to be affected by insects that typically cause problems with cucumbers and melons. A terrific container or hanging basket variety!
This packet sows 10 mounds.
When to sow outside: 1 to 2 weeks after average last frost, and when soil temperature is at least 65°F.
When to start inside: 4 to 6 weeks before average last frost.
Harvesting: Pick fruits when about the size of a grape or under 1″ long for best flavor. As fruits mature, sourness increases.
(information from www.botanicalinterests.com)