Russian Pickled Watermelon

My husband always claims that any two flavors that are good separately are good together. He reminds me of this when enjoying chocolate ice cream and mango sorbet with gummy bears and caramel on top. I thought I was a little picky about my flavor combinations, but turns out I just like different ones.

I wrote last month about living in southern Israel a little bit. It was, and still is, my favorite place in the world. There were parts I adored, and parts that were frustrating. And in the case of grocery shopping it was both. At the end of the week, grocery shopping was a crazy experience, as everyone was getting ready for Shabbat. So if I procrastinated grocery shopping, or simply didn't want to have to fight to stay in line, I went across town to Tiv Taams.

Tiv Taams was really fun because it was almost like walking in to a Whole Foods, but stocked with Russian goods. It's also where you could American goods, and most importantly, that is where you could get bacon and pork sausage. The mix was way fun to shop through. On one particular trip there I noticed a small container of watermelon swimming in garlic and dill and was really curious, no way those would be good together, right?!?!? But I knew I had to try it.

HusbandMan did not enjoy them.

He loves pickles, he adores watermelon, by all accounts he should have liked this, but this was a no-go for him. But me? I loved it. Like, really, really, loved it. Who would have thought? So when Foodie Extravaganza picked Watermelon for this months theme I knew it was time to finally share the recipe. Though I first tried them in Israel the dish is a Russian tradition. Next I can't wait to share pickled tomatoes, mmmmm!

8 c. of watermelon slices
1-2 jalapenos, sliced
4 garlic cloves, smashed
1 Tbsp peppercorns
3 green onions, sliced
2 bay leaves
1/4 c. fresh dill, divided
3 c. water
1 c. apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. salt
2 Tbsp. sugar

Bring everything but the watermelon and half the dill to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove the dill and set aside to cool completely.You can pour it over hot but the watermelon won't stay crisp if you rush it.

Place the watermelon in a bowl with the remaining dill. Pour the cold pickling liquid over the top. Chill for at least 8 hours before enjoying.

Try these other tasty recipes with watermelon being shared for today's Foodie Extravaganza:


  1. I feel like I should have had this, having spent a bit of time in Russia, but not sure if I definitely did. I feel like I need to try it either way - the photos look great too.

  2. I have heard of pickled watermelon rinds but never the whole watermelon. How interesting. I'm intrigued by this dish.

  3. I've seen pickled watermelon rind, but not the whole fruit. I'm really intrigued and pretty sure I'd vote yes with you.

  4. How interesting! I have never thought to try pickling watermelon. Sounds incredible!

  5. I have never heard of pickled watermelon, but, love this recipe and curious to try it out.


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