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  • FoodSaver V3240 Vertical Vacuum Sealer, White
    FoodSaver V3240 Vertical Vacuum Sealer, White
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    I just started using a FoodSaver vacuum sealer to seal foods and I can't believe I waited so long to get one. (Check out my first project: Sweet & Sour Green Bean Freezer Pickles!)
    For example: In the past I would take the time to pick beautiful berries, then would bring them home and stick them in a zippered baggie in the freezer. My berries would have ice crystals and taste freezer burnt after just a few short months. 
    Then I had a light-bulb moment: "Air is the enemy" of freshness. 
    When vacuum-sealed my berries last 3 to 4 times longer! I have similar results with other fruits, veggies and even meats & cheeses.
    The FoodSaver has been a fantastic discovery. ~ Brook
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      Mehu-Liisa 10 Liter Stainless Steel Steam Juicer - Made in Finland
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      Some day I will replace my ancient graniteware Steam Juice Extractor with this gorgeous Mehu-Liisa brand Steam Juicer. My old Steam Juicer leaks steam, meaning I have to refill the water often, and it doesn't have anywhere close to the capacity of this one from Mehu-Liisa.
      If you want to experience the magic of a Steam Juicer, check out this 10 quart Mehu-Liisa. It will last you a lifetime and save you countless hours in the kitchen, whether your juicing fruit for  Plum Jelly or Apricot Nectar, not to mention it minimizes the mess of juicing large amounts of veggies!  ~ Brook

    • Ball Quilted Jelly Canning Jar 4 Oz (Pack of 12)
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      What's the one jar size I always keep a couple extra cases of? 
      The Ball 4 ounce jar.
      It's basically 1/2 cup, and just the right size for gift-giving and for experimenting with small batches. Perfect for things like my famous Pear Honey.
      People can't help but say "That is so darn cute!" when they seem them. 
      ~ Brook

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      Looking for an affordable, easy-to-use pressure canner, backed up by great customer service? Look no further than the Presto 23 quart Pressure Canner/Cooker. It's the one I recommend to all my students. ~ Brook

     

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      ThermoWorks
      Do you have a great instant-read thermometer, or are you still buying the 20 dollar ones that only last a year or two? This was one of my best kitchen purchases.
      Can't imagine cooking jam (or meat or candy) without it! 
      Take your jams to 220º and you'll have a perfect gel set every time. Also available in other colors, but why wouldn't you want orange? It's only the BEST COLOR EVER. ~ Brook

     

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      If you're looking for a book that covers every preserving topic imaginable, this is the book for you. It doesn't have a flashy cover or glossy pictures, but it's full of great info. One of my very favorite resources. ~ Brook

    • OXO Good Grips Corn Stripper
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      Last August my friend Kelli asked me if I wanted some fresh corn from her grandpa's garden. I said "Sure....I'd love to make a few jars of Sweet Corn Relish!"
      She showed up 6 hours later with 158 ears. Wasn't sure if I loved her or hated her for it.
      After a long hot day spent cutting kernels off all those cobs with a small paring knife, I decided I'd never be without a Corn Stripper again. ~ Brook

     

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    International Food Blogger Conference 2011 NOLA

    « Sour Cherry Surprise | Main | Interview with Expendable Edibles »
    Thursday
    Jun302011

    Watermelon Rind Pickles

    I'm sure you've heard the phrases:

     "Never let anything go to waste"

    ~ and ~

     "Reduce - Reuse - Recycle"

    Keeping these concepts in mind, let's make some tasty Watermelon Rind Pickles. 


    Don't let that perfectly usable watermelon rind go to waste. Recycle it into fancy old-fashioned pickles. Some people might not know that the rind of a watermelon doesn't belong in the compost bin...it belongs in your belly! 

    But first you need to separate the tender rind from the hard outer green skin and the pink edible inner flesh.  

    The rind is the white portion in the middle.

     Cut the rind into 1 inch chunks. Soak the chunks overnight in a brine made by mixing the salt and water together.The next day, drain the watermelon rind chunks, put them into a large pot, and cover with fresh water. 

    Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer, and continue simmering until the rind is tender.

    Drain again.

    While rind is simmering, make the syrup in a saucepan large enough to hold the chunks. Simmer syrup mixture for 5 minutes, then add the rinds to the syrup and cook until the rinds become translucent.

     

    Then pack the rind mixture into hot, sterilized pint jars and fill with syrup, hopefully pausing long enough to enjoy the heady aromas of spiced syrup & watermelon mingling together.

    Cover with a tight-fitting lid and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months, unless you want to seal them for longer storage, and in that case you can find detailed instructions here: Watermelon Rind Pickles.


    There's something so retro about Watermelon Rind Pickles, yet they are very much back in vogue. The sweet & spicy quality of the rinds make them a wonderful pairing with savory cured meats, and they're a lovely addition to any relish platter, looking a little like shimmering jewels.

    I love knowing I have a few jars of these in the pantry for when company drops by. People are always taken by surprise that something as simple as a watermelon rind can be transformed into such a deliciously complex little morsel.


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    Reader Comments (4)

    I will be making these! Daughter is getting married end-of-summer. Wedding feast will include a pig roast--I'll be canning pickles to go with. Any suggestions of best pickles with pig??

    July 1, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermonica kass rogers

    Thank you Monica!

    A pig roast? What a super idea. Where were you when I was getting married? ;)

    Well I love all pickles: Sweet, Bread & Butter, Dill, Sour (fermented), tiny Cornichon.
    Wouldn't it be fun to do an assortment?
    I blogged on my site about making 7 pickle recipes in 7 days. I don't think I can link you to it through this reply box but I'm sure you'll find it if you scroll up to the KEYWORD SEARCH box in the left-hand column and type in "7 pickles".

    I think if the pig is even a tad bit salty (and I mean that in a good way) you will want to do something on the sweet side. These Watermelon Rind Pickles are just the ticket!!!

    Btw, I checked out your website "Lost Recipes Found" -- love it.
    Plus I am now following you on Twitter!

    B

    July 1, 2011 | Registered CommenterBrook Hurst Stephens

    What do you put in for the syrup? It looks delicious!

    July 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

    Hi Amanda ~

    The ingredients for the syrup are listed in the printable recipe....just click on the words: "Watermelon Rind Pickles".

    I think it might be the brown sugar that gives it that gorgeous amber color!

    Thanks for asking :)

    B

    July 5, 2011 | Registered CommenterBrook Hurst Stephens
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