Horned melons are native to Africa and are currently also cultivated in parts of the US, South America, and Australia. So why have you probably not heard of it?
Well, it's just not very popular, to be honest. This one was 2.99, which is a little bit pricey for its size and not so flattering reputation. The pulp is pretty much entirely edible seeds suspended in little packets of flesh, sort of like a pomegranate, which is not always what you want from your melons. It looks cool though.
It smells kind of like an under ripe banana crossed with a cucumber. It's not a very strong scent, but it's definitely distinct. It tastes like a combination thereof with a hint of citrus. It's very juicy and hydrating. Kiwano are one of very few sources of water in the Kalahari Desert during the dry season, and I can certainly see it being useful in that situation, but not so much in cooking. The texture is sort of like cucumber seeds suspended in aloe vera jelly. Overall, the effect inspires a resounding "meh". There's nothing really special about kiwano, aside from its appearance. Emi described it as the cousin Oliver to the pomegranate’s Brady Bunch. Same idea, no one really likes them. Stay queer!