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Catholic Recipe: Watermelon Pickle


  • rind of 1 large watermelon
  • salted water
  • 4 cups water
  • 8 cups sugar
  • 4 cups cider vinegar
  • 4 teaspoons whole cloves
  • 4 teaspoons whole allspice
  • 8 sticks cinnamon


Prep Time: 2 days

Difficulty: • • •

Cost: $$$$

For Ages:15+

Origin: USA


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And of course the Independence Day's dessert everywhere has long been a triangle or a circle of watermelon. Never, never, we hope, will it become the small new variety just developed, we hear with a sense of shock, with no seeds at all. The color combination surely should all be kept in the true watermelon — the black seeds, with the red, the white, and the green.

Further, we hear, the experts are working not only to produce a seedless watermelon, but one with a very thin green rind. When that happens, what will happen to one of the nation's delicacies, the watermelon pickle? Before that dread day, we hasten to offer here a recipe for this truly American relish.


Peel and remove all the green and pink portions from the rind of 1 large watermelon. Cut into squares, oblongs, or any desired shape and soak in salt water to cover, allowing 1 tablespoon of salt to 1 cup of water. Soak for about twelve hours or overnight. Drain, cover with fresh water, and cook gently until almost tender. Make a syrup of the water, sugar, vinegar, and spices (tied in a cheesecloth bag) and boil for about twenty minutes. Remove the spice bag, add the drained watermelon, and cook until clear and transparent. Pack at once in sterilized jars and seal.

Recipe Source: Feast Day Cookbook by Katherine Burton and Helmut Ripperger, David McKay Company, Inc., New York, 1951