Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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cassabanana Sicana odorifera, also known as sikana or musk cucumber, is found throughout tropical America, sometimes being grown as an ornamental vine. It is popular for its fruit in some places, notably Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. Melocotón is one name often used.

The fruit resembles a large, wide-bodied cucumber (measuring up to 60 × 12 cm/24" × 5") in shape, and has a hard, shiny shell, which can be red, purple, or black in colour. The orangey-yellow, juicy flesh is melon-like in texture and smell, and the central cavity contains a soft pulp surrounding massive rows of tightly packed, flat, oval seeds.