Yes, you read that right, Watermelon Rind Preserves. Jam made from the rind or white part of the watermelon. Yes, you can eat that. It doesn’t have the same juicy watermelon taste as the red fruit part, so it needs a little sugar and some cooking to bring it out.
If any of you have seen my Tomato Preserves recipe, this will look mighty familiar. I used the same recipe, except I upped the lemon because watermelon does not have the acidity that tomatoes do and you need some acid for proper jelling.
When I originally attempted to make this I used an overly complicated less that satisfying recipe from Ball Blue Book. I am tempted to take the old recipe off the site because this one is so much better.
Watermelon Rind Preserves
- 1 pound watermelon rind (the white part with a bit of pink, all green peel removed)
- 1 pound sugar
- 1 Large lemon
- 1/2" piece ginger (peeled)
- Finely chop the watermelon rind and place in a large non-metal bowl. Add sugar and stir to coat all of the rind in sugar. Let stand for 12 hours.
- When ready to cook, place two metal teaspoons in the freezer.
- Drain watermelon juice into a large sauce pan. Boil until the syrup thickens and falls of a spoon in heavy drops. Approximately 15 minutes.
- Add the reserved watermelon rind to the thickened syrup. Grate the lemon zest and add to the syrup. Cut lemon in half and squeeze juice into the syrup. Add the ginger.
- Boil mixture until thick, about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- To test for doneness, remove one spoon from the freezer. With the spoon you used to stir the preserves remove about 1/4 teaspoon of preserves and pour into the frozen spoon to quick chill. Tilt the frozen spoon over the pot, if the preserves pour off in large thick drops it is done. If it pours off quickly, boil for another few minutes and retest with the other frozen spoon.
- Remove ginger. Put preserves in sterilized jars and boil in a water bath canner for 20 minutes.
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