Watermelon Pickles

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My garden is winding down.  Especially my cucumbers. I have both bread and butter and dill pickles as far as the eye can see. I have also canned some salsa with the tomatoes and peppers I have from my garden.

I tried my hand at peach barbecue sauce over the summer and was not impressed.  So I was on the search to preserve something else.  I wanted something kind of on the cheap side I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on fruit. Then it occurred to me, the hubster bought a big old watermelon the other day. Why not pickle that rind? I know watermelon is available year round, but it it at its tastiest right now.

I would have normally tossed the rind in the garbage after getting all the delicious pink flesh out of it.  Why not try pickling it?  I wouldn’t cost anything, and it really is not that hard to do.

You are probably wondering what you would do with this stuff after you pickled it.  I love the salty sweet flavor so I would wrap a piece of ham or better yet bacon around one of these little jewels and enjoy it as an appetizer. I also love to have it for breakfast.  Add a few of these jems to your Greek yogurt for a wonderful surprise in the morning.

Are you looking for other ways to enjoy watermelon? Check out watermelon.org for other tasty stuff. They even have a Facebook page, check it out Facebook Watermelon.org

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Watermelon Pickles

Ingredients:

1 10 pound watermelon
6 cups cold water
1/3 cup pickling salt
3 1/2 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups white vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
4 star anise broken up
2 teaspoons whole cloves

Directions:

Cut your rind from your watermelon. Trim off the pink flesh and the green and pale green outer portion of the rind. You can discard those portions. Cut the rind into about 1 inch squares.
Place the rind in a large nonreactive bowl. In another bowl combine the 6 cups of water and pickling salt, pour it over the rind. Cover the bowl and allow it to sit overnight.
Put the rind mixture in a colander and rinse it with cold water.
Transport it to a heavy pot. Add enough water to cover the rind. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes or until rind is tender. Drain well.
In another pot make your syrup by adding the sugar, vinegar, water, star anise and cloves to the pot. Bring to a boil stirring until sugar dissolves about 10 minutes. Reduce heat to a simmer and add the rind. Allow to cook covered for about 25-30 minutes or until the rind is translucent.
Pack the rind and syrup in sterilized half pint canning jars leaving a 1/2 inch head space. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Process in a water bath for 10 minutes.
Makes 6 half pint jars.

Peace be with you,

Vonnie