Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Pickled Watermelon Rind FAIL

Well, I love a culinary adventure, so I was super eager to make the Citrus and Spice Pickled Watermelon Rind from "Vegan Soul Kitchen." I've heard of pickled watermelon rind before, but I'd never had it ... so it was really a big adventure.

To get started, I followed the instructions to peel and cube the rind, leaving just a slight hint of the pink. Pretty beautiful huh?

Next up, I got the brine going - oranges, lemons, cloves, cinnamon sticks, vinegar, and sugar. Also very beautiful.

Then I soaked overnight, rinsed and cooked the rind cubes. The color was muted now, but I still think they look really pretty.

Next, the brine and the rind are combined, cooked up, and canned. I was so pleased with how beautiful these jars looked!

Pleased, that is, until we tasted it - ICK!! My aunt, my boyfriend, and I all took a bite, and let's just say that not one of those nibbles made it down the hatch. This stuff was seriously nasty. SO overpoweringly CLOVE-y. It's like all you can taste. My aunt described it as "mouth-numbing." Just totally not a success by any definition. Well, the only thing that was great was the texture of the watermelon rind. I loved it. I had no idea what to expect and I loved the texture. So, now I am just all the more determined to find a good recipe and try again one day... ever persistent!

The contents were dumped out, the jars were washed and sterilized and re-purposed. I made berry jam and used them for that instead. The berry jam is delicious, of course... nice to end on a happy note! :)

See you on Thursday for VeganMoFo!!


  1. Taylor5:13 PM

    Hi Amey! Long time no talk, and I'm sorry for the randomness, but I actually check your blog almost every day to see if you've posted something new, (do I sound like a creeper?) and all of the links on the side inspire me to try new recipes and cooking. :) I'd fallen off the veg bandwagon due to pure laziness, which I'm willing but ashamed to admit, and after reading some more info today, more stats about animals & pollution, and recipes, I'm gonna try to stick to it this time! Unfortunately I don't have a ton of support at home, as certain somebodies seem to think meat is a meal essential...Gross... But! I do have a supportive boyfriend that is at least starting out again as a pescatarian egg eater... And soon hopefully I can at least get him to be a lacto-vegetarian... I never drink cows milk anyway, [out of lots of experimenting with different types [[hemp, almond, soy]] I've found I like soy best... but any suggestions?]... My one struggle is local cheese from the farmer's market... But I'm really working on being totally veg [no dairy either] by xmas time!

    Anyhow!! Sorry for the long rant, but wanted to let you know that you've really inspired me since our China trip, and I think from now on I'm going to make more of a conscious effort of what I'm putting into my body. So I guess I just wanted to say thank you. :)

    Lastly, in reference to the pickled watermelon...... Next time why not just air seal it in a huge jar, and display as art in the kitchen? :P

    Hope you're doing well!!!

    <333 Taylor

  2. Anonymous6:31 PM

    Seems like that cookbook has been a bit of a dog..? The recipes must not have been properly tested.


  3. Cloves can certainly be overpowering. Too bad it didn't turn out. My mom grew up in Mississippi and loves watermelon rind pickles. I never could understand why....

  4. Wow. My Mom always made pickled watermelon rind for my brother when we were growing up. He was the only one who ate it...we all thought it was gross, but she made it for him anyway. What a random memory!

  5. Well I'm glad it's not just me then! I too tried to make watermelon rind pickles this season, but was appalled at the results... Perhaps watermelon rinds were simply not meant to be eaten? ;)

  6. Pretty pictures for sure but all that fruit turned into compost. Too bad. But you get lots of points for trying something new!

  7. amey,
    we'll find you a nice nola recipe. h2oM rinds are yummy when they're seasoned right.


  8. Hi...new to your blog! We are recently vegan...husbands heart health!! I'm in need of, not only vegan, but NO OIL! HELP! Ken used to be vegan years ago and we now find ourselves back to eating consiously...I have a "sweet tooth" and most of what I have found...using egg replacer and replacing oil with applesauce...just doesn't cut it! I will be checking back for more recipe ideas!

  9. Oooh cloves can definitely pack a punch! Good luck finding another recipe, the whole idea sounds so intriguing.

  10. I'd never even heard of pickled watermelon rind until this summer, and I've never tasted it (can't say I'm craving to now....) Nice save with the jam!

  11. I never knew such a thing existed. Woe that it was a fail, but you can never know these things until you try! Sounds like other people have had a bad run with this as well. Still... I am slightly intrigued by the thought!

  12. Sorry it didn't turn out for you! We all fail every once in a while :) I'm not a watermelon fan, but I bet I would like these pickled rinds, if they're not too watermelon-y.

  13. sorry those cloves did not work out for you. if you'd like, i can refund your money for the book. best, bryant

  14. At least you could use the filled jars as decoration? They look pretty. I am sorry the recipe was such a bummer.

  15. Sorry it didn't work out too well :( They do look prety.

    I have been looking fwd to cooking from Vegan Soul Kitchen for the cookbook challenge though!

  16. Bummer it didn't work out, it looked like a lot of work. I was eyeing that recipe and thought about trying it but I was too lazy. Now, you've saved me the trouble. Thanks!


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