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Part of the question then becomes are the benefits of drinking "pickle juice"/brining solution just from the solution? Or is it two way street with some benefit derived from what is being soaked in it. 

Were you eating the pickled watermelon or just drinking the juice? Also, for that particular one, were you using raw, 
american-style bacon or something else?  I could see some danger, but if you can pickle various meats, I guess you can pickle American bacon slices. (I specify American, as opposed to Canadian, or other cuts that might have been meant in period documentation).

I imagine that it is both the various salts and the vinegar that you are looking for.

Pickle some cucumbers, vegetables or even meat for Pennsic, use the items in the first week and use/drink the pickle juice the second or as you use up the pickled items. The almost constant comment is that you should leave enough pickled juice, or even top it off if needed, as you add or take out the pickled items.

Also, I would avoid using "distilled vinegar". if you look closely, some of it is just distilled petroleum product. Besides it has no taste. Wine based vinegar (notice, wine -> vine gar) would be the most common in period, including apple and other fruit vinegars as well as wine based ones. If you note in the vinegar-msg file, bad wine would sometimes be sent by ship somewhere to encourage it to turn into vinegar through the shipboard agitation. So turning a bad product into one that was more salable. :-)

Stefan

On Jul 20, 2013, at 11:56 PM, Nest ffynnon <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Thank you!
> 
> Again, I'm looking for pickle juice that has electrolites.
> Probably for veggies, though not necessarily only cucumbers.
> 
> My favorite appetizer EVER was pickled watermelon rind wrapped in bacon.
> 
> I'll peruse the files and see what I can find.
> 
> Nest
> 
> 
> On Jul 20, 2013, at 11:22 PM, Stefan li Rous wrote:
> 
> Well, are you thinking of pickled meats? pickled vegetables or just pickled cucumbers?
> <snip>
> 
> --------
> THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra
>   Mark S. Harris           Austin, Texas          [log in to unmask]
> http://www.linkedin.com/in/marksharris
> **** See Stefan's Florilegium files at:  http://www.florilegium.org ****