Russian Pickled Watermelon

Russian Pickled Watermelon
The recipe for these savory pickles is based on one that appears in Pickled: Preserving a World of Tastes and Traditions by Lucy Norris (Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 2003). See the recipe for Russian Pickled Watermelon »André Baranowski

The recipe for these savory pickles is based on one that appears in Pickled: Preserving a World of Tastes and Traditions by Lucy Norris (Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 2003); it was contributed by Sophia Vinokurau, the owner of M & I International Foods in Brooklyn, New York.

Russian Pickled Watermelon
A great use for unintentionally underripe watermelons, their juicy sweetness is perfectly complemented here by a garlicky, cayenne-spiced brine.
Yield: serves 6

Ingredients

  • 14 cup kosher salt
  • 14 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. pickling spices
  • 34 tsp. cayenne
  • 12 tsp. distilled white vinegar
  • 8 cloves peeled garlic, smashed
  • 5 ribs celery, coarsely chopped
  • 12 bunch dill, roots trimmed
  • 2 lb. watermelon, rind left on, cut into 1"-thick wedges

Instructions

  1. In a large nonreactive bowl or pot, stir together salt, sugar, pickling spices, cayenne, vinegar, garlic, celery, dill, and 8 cups water until salt and sugar dissolve. Submerge the watermelon wedges. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 week and up to 2 weeks before serving.