So I have this issue with throwing away food. I always want to find a way to use up my scraps, either in another recipe or in my compost bin. This summer my husband and kids decided to go on a watermelon binge and I had rinds coming out of my ears. I had heard of watermelon rind pickles, but never actually tasted one. Fermenting foods is one of my favorite “cooking” methods, so I decided to give these a go.
When looking around online I came across a spiced recipe, I changed it up a bit here. I also wanted to make a traditional pickle flavor, in case my kids didn’t like the clove flavor. They are both delicious!
Fermented Watermelon Rind Pickles
Ingredients for basic brine:
- 1 medium organic watermelon
- 6 cups water
- 3 Tbsp sea salt — where to find
For the dill pickle rinds, add the following to the jars:
- 6 garlic cloves
- 2 Tbsp mustard seeds
- 1 large dill sprig or 1 tsp dried dill
For the sweet and spicy rinds, add the following to the jars:
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 tsp whole cloves
- Slice watermelon, removing the pink flesh to eat. I place a cutting board inside of a cookie sheet so the juice does not run all over
- Trim green outer layer off of the rind and discard
- Chop peeled rind into 1″ pieces, making them as evenly shaped as possible
- Place the chopped rind into a clean half gallon glass jar — like these
- I filled two half gallon glass jars with the rind from one medium water melon
- Heat the water until boiling
- Add in salt and stir until dissolved (note, my water looks “dirty” in this pic because I use real salt and it has minerals and other goodies in it that look a little different than the traditional white table salt).
- Add in your flavorings of choice to the jar
- Pour brine over watermelon rind in jars, until the neck of the jar (do not overfill). I use a funnel to do this
- Place your airlock lid onto the jars, because the airlock system is seriously the easiest way to go! — where to find
- Cover the jars with a dark towel and place in a moderate temperature area, the warmer it is the faster they ferment. Keep it covered so the fermentation is not affected by sunlight
- Allow to ferment 3-5 days, you can taste them after three to see if you like the flavor. The longer they ferment, the more sour they will taste
- Place a plastic lid on the jar (metal will rust) and put the pickles in the fridge. They will last quite a while in the fridge, we have not had a batch go bad yet!
- Makes two half gallon jars of watermelon pickles
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