A member of the cucurbita family, which includes squash, pumpkins, cucumbers, melons and gourds, cantaloupe and
its relatives grow on the ground surface as a trailing vine. An excellent source of beta-carotene, folic acid, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C and dietary fiber, fresh cantaloupe is a popular breakfast fruit. It is a wonderful addition to summer fruit salads or fresh desserts, and it can also be used as an ingredient in drinks. It has a distinctive unique flavor when compared to other melon varieties. Cantaloupe pairs well with feta and goat cheeses, almonds and hazelnuts, and of course, ice cream or custards.
Keep cantaloupe at room temperature until ripe. When ripe, store in refrigerator. To bring out the best flavor, remove an hour before serving. Wash outside surface thoroughly before cutting. Cut cantaloupe sections can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days.