Delicious Recipes with Watermelon Rind: Pickles, Curry, and Chutney

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Written By Haryana’s Restaurant

Authentic Indian Food – Classic Indian Cuisine in Terrace BC

Ever wondered what to do with those leftover watermelon rinds after enjoying the sweet, juicy fruit? Instead of tossing them out, you can transform these often-overlooked parts into delicious and nutritious dishes. Watermelon rind is not only edible but also packed with vitamins and antioxidants that benefit your health.

Ingredients

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to transform watermelon rind into delicious dishes.

Watermelon Rind Prep

  • 1 medium-sized watermelon rind, peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon salt (for soaking)
  • Water (enough to cover the rind)

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced

Equipment Needed

To transform watermelon rind into delicious dishes, you will need a few essential pieces of equipment. Having the right tools ensures that your process is smooth and efficient.

Cutting Board

A sturdy cutting board is crucial for safely slicing the watermelon. Opt for a large one to accommodate the size of the fruit.

Chef’s Knife

A sharp chef’s knife helps make precise cuts through the tough rind. Ensure it’s well-maintained to avoid any accidents.

Peeler

Use a vegetable peeler to remove the green outer skin from the watermelon rind, leaving only the white part for your recipes.

Measuring Cups and Spoons

Accurate measurements are key when following recipes, so have a set of measuring cups and spoons on hand.

Saucepan or Pot

For cooking processes such as boiling or simmering, use a medium-sized saucepan or pot. This will help in making pickles or jams from the rind.

Mixing Bowl

A large mixing bowl is necessary for combining ingredients evenly before cooking or marinating.

Colander

Drain excess water from washed rinds using a colander. This step helps prevent soggy textures in your final dish.

Storage Containers

Once you’ve prepared your dishes, store them in airtight containers to maintain freshness and flavor. Mason jars work great if you’re making pickles or preserves.

Having these tools ready will streamline your cooking process and ensure each recipe with watermelon rind turns out perfectly every time.

Preparation Steps

Preparing watermelon rind for various recipes involves a few essential steps. Follow these instructions to ensure your watermelon rind is ready for culinary creativity.

Cleaning and Peeling Watermelon Rind

  1. Wash the Watermelon: Rinse the entire watermelon under cold running water to remove any dirt or residues.
  2. Cut Off Ends: Place the watermelon on a cutting board and use a sharp chef’s knife to cut off both ends, creating flat surfaces.
  3. Peel the Outer Skin: Stand the watermelon upright on one of its flat ends. Carefully slice downward along the curve of the fruit, removing the green outer skin and white pith until only the light green rind remains.
  4. Rinse Again: Give the peeled rind another quick rinse under cold water.

Preparing the Lime Rind

  1. Slice into Strips: Lay each piece of rind flat on your cutting board, then slice it into long, uniform strips about ½ inch wide.
  2. Dice into Cubes: Take those strips and cut them crosswise into small cubes around ½ inch in size, perfect for pickling or stir-fries.
  3. Julienne for Salads: For salads or slaws, stack several slices together and julienne (cut into thin matchstick-sized pieces).
  4. Grate if Needed: If your recipe calls for grated rind (like in some chutneys), use a box grater to grate the prepared rind pieces finely.

Recipe 1: Watermelon Rind Pickles

Transforming watermelon rinds into pickles is a delightful way to use every part of this refreshing fruit. These pickles are tangy, slightly sweet, and perfect as a snack or garnish.

Gather Ingredients for Pickles

  • 4 cups watermelon rind (peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces)
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Cooking Process

  1. Prepare the Brine: In a medium saucepan, combine apple cider vinegar, water, sugar, kosher salt, mustard seeds, black peppercorns, cloves, and cinnamon sticks.
  2. Heat the Mixture: Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves completely.
  3. Add Watermelon Rind: Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the prepared watermelon rind pieces to the saucepan.
  4. Simmer: Let it simmer for about 10 minutes or until the rind becomes tender but still crisp.
  5. Remove from Heat: Turn off the heat and let it cool slightly.

Storing Pickled Watermelon Rind

  1. Transfer to Jars: Using tongs or a slotted spoon transfer the cooked watermelon rind into sterilized jars.
  2. Fill with Brine: Pour the hot brine over the rinds in each jar making sure they are fully submerged.
  3. Seal Jars: Wipe any spills from jar rims with a clean cloth then seal with lids tightly.
  4. Cool Completely: Allow jars to cool at room temperature before refrigerating them.
  5. Refrigerate The pickles need at least overnight refrigeration before consuming for best flavor; however they can be stored in your fridge for up to two weeks.

Recipe 2: Watermelon Rind Curry

Transform your watermelon rinds into a delectable curry. This recipe combines the subtle sweetness of watermelon rind with aromatic spices for a unique, flavorful dish.

Gathering Ingredients for Curry

  • 1 cup watermelon rind (peeled and diced)
  • 1 medium onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1-inch piece ginger (grated)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 5 to 6 curry leaves
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh cilantro for garnish

Cooking the Curry

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  2. Add mustard seeds and let them crackle.
  3. Add cumin seeds and curry leaves; sauté until fragrant.
  4. Introduce finely chopped onions; cook until golden brown.
  5. Stir in minced garlic and grated ginger; cook for 1 minute.
  6. Add chopped tomatoes; cook until they soften.
  7. Mix in turmeric powder, ground coriander, chili powder, and salt; stir well.
  8. Incorporate diced watermelon rind; mix thoroughly with the spice mixture.
  9. Cover the pan and simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes or until the rind is tender.

Serving Suggestions

Serve your watermelon rind curry hot, garnished with fresh cilantro, alongside steamed rice or warm naan bread for a satisfying meal packed with flavor.

Recipe 3: Watermelon Rind Chutney

Add a tangy twist to your meals with this delightful Watermelon Rind Chutney. This recipe transforms watermelon rinds into a zesty condiment that’s perfect for pairing with various dishes.

Prepare Ingredients for Chutney

  • 2 cups watermelon rind, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 1 green chili, chopped (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 10 curry leaves
  • ½ cup vinegar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • Salt to taste

Making the Chutney

  1. Heat Oil: In a large pan heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Sauté Mustard Seeds: Add mustard seeds and let them splutter.
  3. Add Aromatics: Stir in the curry leaves chopped onions garlic ginger and green chili if using. Sauté until onions turn golden brown.
  4. Cook Watermelon Rind: Add diced watermelon rind to the pan and cook for about five minutes stirring occasionally.
  5. Incorporate Vinegar & Sugar: Pour in the vinegar add brown sugar and salt; stir well to combine all ingredients.
  6. Simmer Mixture: Reduce heat to low cover and simmer for about twenty minutes or until the rind is tender and chutney thickens.

Conclusion

Exploring recipes with watermelon rind opens up a world of culinary possibilities that are both nutritious and delicious. From the tangy kick of Watermelon Rind Chutney to the aromatic allure of Watermelon Rind Curry, you’re not just reducing food waste but also adding unique flavors to your meals. So, next time you enjoy a juicy watermelon, don’t toss those rinds—transform them into something extraordinary in your kitchen.

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