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Amre melons are medium-sized, elongated fruits, and have an oval to oblong shape with rounded ends, connected to a thin and fibrous stem. The rind is semi-smooth, encased in light brown netting, and is distinguished by its dark green base covered in yellow striping. Underneath the semi-thick rind, the flesh is orange with some shades of red, depending on growing conditions, and is dense and aqueous, encasing a small central cavity filled with stringy fibers and oblong, flat, and hard, cream-colored seeds. Amre melons are juicy and crisp with a pleasant, mild, and sweet flavor.
Amre melons are available in the summer through winter.
Amre melons, botanically a part of the Cucumis genus, are a sweet, juicy variety that belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family. Also known as Kara-Ameri and Amri, Amre melons are a midseason to late-maturing variety favored for their quality flavor and crunchy consistency. The melons are native to Central Asia, specifically Kazakhstan, and are considered to be somewhat rare due to a lack of quality seeds for cultivation. Though the melons are found in limited availability at local markets, with the recent formation of agricultural institutes and departments, the seeds of the sweet melon variety are being developed to have improved characteristics to increase production. The melons are highly prolific when grown in the warm climate and unique soil composition of Kyzylorda, one of the top melon-producing regions in Kazakhstan, and this region also gave the melons the title of Kyzylorda melons, which describes multiple melon varieties utilized on both a domestic and international level for fresh consumption.
Amre melons are an excellent source of vitamins A and C and contain vitamin K, fiber, iron, calcium, and potassium. The melons are also known as a hydrating food in Central Asia and are consumed to help replenish fluids within the body.
Amre melons are primarily consumed fresh, out-of-hand, and the flesh can be sliced into wedges, squares, or in half and scooped out with a spoon. The melons can also be diced and served with other fruits, greens, and grains, or they can be blended into a drink and consumed as a refreshing beverage. In addition to fresh preparations, Amre melons are popularly sliced and dried for extended use in Kazakhstan. Drying is a traditional method used by the nomadic tribes to preserve fruits throughout the winter season, and the drying techniques used today have been utilized for thousands of years. Dried melon was also a popular item sold along the silk road as a source of income. Amre melons pair well with honey, maple syrup, chocolate, other melons, lemon juice, yogurt, and vanilla. Fresh melons will keep 15-20 days when stored in a cool, dry, and dark place.
Amre melons are rumored to have been named after Amre Kashaubayev, a famous singer in Kazakhstan during the early 20th century. Kashaubayev was considered to be the first famous singer from the country and received international vocal recognition after a performance in Paris.
Amre melons are native to the Kyzylorda region, also spelled Kzyl-Orda, in Kazakhstan, and have been cultivated since ancient times. The southern region is known for its warm climate, plentiful sun, and unique soil composition, and is considered to be a part of the Kazakh Desert. Today Amre melons are found in limited availability at local markets in Kazakhstan and other regions Central Asia. The melons in the photograph above were found at the Green Market in Almaty, Kazakhstan.