Watermelons from the garden or even from the supermaket are high in vitamin C and potassium. They are a good source of fiber as well. Watermelon seeds contain cucurbocitrin that lowers blood pressure and improves kidney function. Take a handful of seeds and soak overnight in 1 quart of water. Strain out the seeds and drink the water. It has a pleasant taste. Watermelon is low in calories – only about 80 of them in 2 cups.
Watermelon usually appears on the dinner table as either a desert or a salad. It can be eaten as a breakfast entrée or as a nutritious snack. It is cooling on a hot summer day and tastes pretty good as well.
Watermelon rind can be pickled and enjoyed all year round.
4 quarts watermelon rind cut into 2”x1” pieces
2 Tablespoons Kosher Salt
4 cups white vinegar
8 cups sugar
3 whole cinnamon sticks, broken in pieces
1 Tablespoons whole cloves
In a large pan place rind and add enough boiling water to cover.
Add salt and simmer until tender. Drain.
Place rind in ice water to stop it from cooking leaving it for at least 1 hour.
Place cinnamon and cloves in a square of cheesecloth and secure.
In a pan combine vinegar, sugar and cheesecloth and bring to a boil boiling for 5 minutes.
While this is boiling drain rind well and add to vinegar mixture.
Simmer until rind looks translucent (10 minutes). Remove and discard cheesecloth.
Pack rind and syrup into hot sterilized quart jars leaving ¼ inch head space.
Attach lids and process in boiling water bath for 20 minutes. Remove to cool and make sure lids seal.
Melon salads are a cooling delicacy during the summer months. Here are two recipes for delectable salads.
GINGER MELON SALAD
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup water
1 teaspoon grated lime rind
¼ cup fresh lime juice
2 Tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped mint
8 cups watermelon balls
2 cups honeydew melon balls
2 cups cantaloupe balls
In a small bowl combine sugar, water, rind, lime juice, ginger and chopped mint. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine melon balls. Add first mixture, cover and chill 1 hour.
Garnish with mint sprigs.