Watermelon is a little bit affordable at the moment in Alice Springs.. .down to $2/kg. I can buy a whole watermelon for only $9? I can no longer recall if this is a good or a ridiculous price.
I have a special affinity with watermelon... my father was once, for a short time only, a watermelon farmer. And he used his posse of daughters well for this venture, encouraging possibly forcing us to chip out weeds on a hot as hell day in north Queensland during an eclipse of the sun. It’s a strange memory I have, tempered by a dip in a lovely waterhole afterwards, with watermelons bobbing up in the water. It was one of those years where there was a glut, and he filled our downstairs area with watermelon. We had so much watermelon, he was selling them on the side of the road.
And so I got to know watermelons well… too well.
So, what to look for with a watermelon, and what to do with them when you have a glut.
When buying a whole watermelon I always tap them or knock them. If they have a hollow sound, that's good. If not, don't buy it.
For sliced watermelon, I check that it's not over-ripe or sugary and is a deep red colour. If it's pale, it's probably under-ripe.