One of the many privileges of spending a summer in Portugal is to taste the amazing melons that start appearing in the markets in early June and keep getting better until October. Melons are a big deal. They’re big (most types weighing 3-4 kg) and they are a tad unpredictable. If you are choosing a peach or a pear at the market you can easily tell how ripe they are from simply looking, smelling and touching. A melon is a different beast and nobody quite knows how to choose a good, ripe, sweet melon. To say that nobody quite knows is not exact. Some people seem to have a knack for getting to the best fruit... Some signs to look out for are weight (i.e. size/weight relationship) and a slight softness on the sides when pressed (with both palms pressing against each other with the melon in the middle). In any case, the big question is whether to go for a white (branco) or green (verde) type. The white ones tend to be a little larger and they are the most traditional Portuguese type (the green variety is called pele de sapo - frog's skin - and some say it often comes from Spain…). The green ones are slightly smaller, often with remarkable taste when ripe and the white ones can be incredibly moist and as sweet as honey. Branco ou verde? That’s a Portuguese dilemma!!!