Names of Allah

Friday, February 25, 2011

Winter melon

Winter melon
Nearly mature winter melon
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Cucurbitales
Family: Cucurbitaceae
Subfamily: Cucurbitoideae
Tribe: Benincaseae
Subtribe: Benincasinae
Genus: Benincasa
Species: B. hispida
Binomial name
Benincasa hispida
Camolenga Post & Kuntze
The winter melon, also called white gourd, ash gourd, or "fuzzy melon", is a vine grown for its very large fruit, eaten as a vegetable when mature. It is the only member of the genus Benincasa. The fruit is fuzzy when young.The immature melon has thick white flesh that is sweet when eaten. By maturity, the fruit loses its hairs and develops a waxy coating, giving rise to the name wax gourd, and providing a long shelf life. The melon may grow as large as 80cm in length. Although the fruit is referred to as a "melon," the fully grown crop is not sweet. Originally cultivated in Southeast Asia, the winter melon is now widely grown in East Asia and South Asia as well.
Winter melon is also a common name for members of the Inodorus cultivar group of the muskmelon (Cucumis melo L), more commonly known as casaba or honeydew melons.


  • 1 Uses
  • 2 Vernacular names


In China and Taiwan, the winter melon is used to make soup in the same way as daikon radishes, and is often combined with pork or pork/beef bones. In North India and Pakistan, the vegetable is used to prepare a candy called Petha. In South Indian cuisine it is used to make curries. Occasionally, it is used to produce a fruit drink which has a very distinctive taste. It is usually sweetened with caramelized sugar, which enhances the taste. In Southeast Asia, the drink is widely marketed as winter melon tea. In China, the winter melon is dried and sweetened and eaten at New Year festivals. In China and Taiwan it is one of the basis of Moon Cake for the yearly Moon Festival
The winter melon requires very warm weather to grow but can be kept through the winter much like winter squash. The winter melon can typically be stored for 12 months. The melons are used in stir fry or to make winter melon soup, which is often served in the scooped out melon, which has been intricately decorated by scraping off the waxy coating.
The shoots, tendrils, and leaves of the plant may also be eaten as greens.

Vernacular names

A small bowl of Chinese winter melon soup
A winter melon used as a serving bowl for winter melon soup
  • Assamese: komora
  • Bengali: চাল কুমড়া chal kumṛa (lit. "thatch pumpkin")
  • Burmese: kyauk pha-yon thee
  • Chinese: dōngguā (lit. "winter melon")
  • English: ash gourd, (Chinese) winter melon, fuzzy melon, green pumpkin, wax gourd, white gourd, Hairy Melon
  • French: courge cireuse, courgette velue (lit. "hairy zucchini")
  • German: Wachskürbis, Wintermelone (Benincasa hispida)
  • Hindi: पेठा peṭhā, pethakaddu
  • Ilocano: tabungaw
  • Indonesian: beligo, kundur
  • Japanese: とうがん tōgan (冬瓜, lit. "winter melon")
  • Konkani: kuvalo
  • Kannada: boodagumbala
  • Kapampangan: Kundul
  • Malay: kundur
  • Malayalam: കുമ്പളങ്ങ kumbalanga
  • Marathi: कोहळा kohḷa
  • Portuguese: abóbora d’água (lit. "water pumpkin"), comalenge
  • Sinhala:පුහුල් Puhul
  • Taiwanese: dangguev (冬瓜, lit. "winter melon")
  • Tamil: neer poosanikai (நீர்பூசனி)
  • Tagalog: kundol
  • Telugu: boodida gummadikaya (బూడిద గుమ్మడి)
  • Thai: ฟักเขียว fak khiaw (lit. "green squash")
  • Tulu: ಕರ್ಕು೦ಬುಡ karkumbuda
  • Urdu: پیٹھہ, peṭhā
  • Vietnamese: bí đao
  • Mizo: Maipawl

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