Pickled Watermelon Rinds

With summer in full bloom, watermelon is everywhere. I come from the waste not want not school of thought and I try to use everything. So, what to do with all of the watermelon rind left from your juicy melon? Make a batch of  Alton Brown’s Watermelon Rind Pickles of course. I didn’t have whole allspice berries as called for in Mr. Brown’s recipe, so I substituted 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice. I also used a little less vinegar and a little more red pepper flakes.

The crystallized ginger is absolutely amazing! Just the right amount of tart and sweet. I enjoy my pickled watermelon straight from the jar, on salads or with proseco. So, go ahead, waste not want not. Plan to make a batch of these watermelon pickles when you buy your next watermelon.

Adapted from Alton Brown’s Recipe

Prep Time: 30 min                Cook Time: 5 min                                              Difficulty: Easy Peasy

Servings: varies                     Serving Size: 1/4 cup (about 4 pieces)         Yield: 2 quarts     SP: 1

 

INGREDIENTS:

Rind from about a 5 pound watermelon, approximately 2 pounds of rind

1 cup water

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

3/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup candied or crystallized ginger chunks, finely diced

4 teaspoons kosher salt

1  1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 star anise pod

DIRECTIONS:

1. Cut melon from rind, leaving 1/4-1/2 inch of watermelon flesh.

2. Peel off outer green layer of rind with a paring knife and cut into 1-inch cubes.  (Alton recipe calls for the outer rind to be cut off using a vegetable peeler, however that didn’t work fr me. If it works for you, go for it!)

3. Bring the apple cider vinegar, water, sugar, ginger, salt and other spices to a boil over medium-high heat in a 2-quart saucepan. Let boild for 1 minutes, then add the watermelon cubes. Return the mixture with the rinds to a boil and turn off the heat. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let cool for 30 minutes.

4. Move the pickles to a 2-quart canning jar. Pour as much of the pickling liquid as possible. Cover the jar and leave at room temperature for 90 minutes.

5. Refrigerate overnight and eat! The pickles must be refrigerated.

 

NOTES, TIPS & TRICKS:  Recipes are starting points. Don’t be shy to adjust the ingredients and flavors to suite your tastes. Have FUN!

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