|Faces of Ancient Europe|
Photo of Luis Meléndez -
Still Life with Melon and Pears
Avenzoar explains that the melon may experience a noxious transformation generating a humor similar to poison if when eaten this occurs. Because the melon has no astringent power to protect it, it accelerates the process of the noxious alteration. Even eating it with bread after a copious meal the alteration cannot be avoided. The meal in the stomach prevents the melon from leaving it. The chances of this happening are less than one in 1,000.
|Chunks of Cold Melon|
Tasty Any Time of Day
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Medicinally, melon dissolves gall and kidney stones when the peel and seeds are drunk as an infusion. When smelled, it reanimates one suffering from fainting spells. By cleaning the body with the pulp, it is left refreshed and hydrated. It also alleviates heat exhaustion. Luis Lobera de Avila, court physician of Charles V of Hapsburg wrote in his medical manual of 1530 that melon seeds are humid and were used to reduce fever and to expel kidney stones.
[Bolens. 1990:34; ES: Carroll-Mann. Guisados 2-art. Jun 6, 01: ftn 74; ES: Chu. Oct 13, 02; Ibn Zuhr/García Sánchez. 1992:86-88; Sánchez-Albornoz. 2000:161 and Villena/Calero. 2002:23a:42b]
LONG AND ROUND MELONS ADAPTED FROM FLOWER’S TRANSLATION OF APICIUS' III:VII. PEPONES ET MELONES, pp 78-79
½ tsp pepper
1 tbsp mint leaves
1 tbsp honey
½ tsp fish bouillon cube or a pinch of salt
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
Combine all the ingredients for the dressing and refrigerate overnight.
Open the melon. Remove the seeds. Cut it into ½” cubes and pour the sauce over the melon and serve.