Watermelon Rind Preserves

When I was very small, my grandmother used to scare the daylights out of me with her watermelon rind false teeth. I don't know how she made them, but it was probably in preparation for making these preserves. This recipe is from Eleanor Bradshaw's article on making jams and preserves.
  • 1-1/2 quarts prepared watermelon rind (about 6 cups)
  • 4 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced lemon (about 1 medium lemon)
  • water
To prepare the rind, trim the green skin and pink flesh from the rind. Cut into 1-inch pieces.

Dissolve the salt in 8 cups of water and pour over the rind. Let stand 5 to 6 hours. Drain, rinse and drain again. Cover with cold water and let stand 30 minutes. Drain. Sprinkle the ginger over the rind, cover with water and cook until fork-tender. Drain.

To make the preserves, combine the sugar, lemon juice and 6 cups water in a large pot or Dutch oven. Boil for 5 minutes. Add the rind and boil gently for 30 minutes or until syrup thickens. Add sliced lemon and cook until lemon rind is transparent. Pack hot into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Remove air bubbles. Adjust caps. Process 20 minutes in boiling water bath.
Makes about 6 half pints.

Recipe editor

Note: Readers will enjoy Cheryl Hill-Burrier's article on canning and food dehydrating and John Raven's article on jams and jelly preserves.
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