Angelo Sosa’s Cured Watermelon Crudo

It resembles tuna sashimi, but it's really watermelon in disguise.

Bing. Bam. Boom.


That’s how easy and fast this recipe comes together, making it a dream dish for hassle-free summer entertaining.

“Cured Watermelon Crudo with Thyme” is from the new cookbook, “Flavor Exposed” (Kyle Books) by “Top Chef” alum, Chef Angelo Sosa.

Sosa may be best known for his tight, skinny jeans that prompted endless razzing from his fellow contestants. But the man can cook, having worked with heavy-weights, Alain Ducasse and Jean-Georges Vongerichten. He’s now executive chef of Social Eatz in New York.

His first cookbook is full of global flavors, especially Asian ones in dishes such as “Grilled Tofu in Ponzu Marinade with Crispy Shallots” to “Tangy Ribs with Tamarind Glaze” to “Burnt Rice Milkshake” made with basmati.

On a recent scorching day, I was drawn to this simple technique for watermelon, which is cut and seasoned to resemble tuna sashimi.

All you do is salt chunks of watermelon, stick them in the fridge for a bit so that some of the liquid is drawn out, leaving the watermelon a little denser.  The only change I made was decreasing the amount of salt by half a teaspoon, as I didn’t think the amount of watermelon really necessitated a full 2 teaspoons. Then, gently toss watermelon chunks with olive oil, fresh thyme leaves and cracked black pepper.

Served cold, the watermelon is beyond quenching. The little cubes are crisp, herbaceous and lush from the olive oil. They’re still plenty sweet, but now a tad savory, too.

And they’re perfect for starting off a meal or ending one.

Bing. Bam. Boom.

Give it a try.

Refreshing one-bite wonders.

Cured Watermelon Crudo

(Serves 4)

2 cups seeded cubed watermelon (1-inch cubes)

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Put watermelon on a sheet pan and sprinkle with the salt. Place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.

Remove watermelon from fridge. Transfer chunks to a bowl, leaving behind any liquid that has leeched out. Add thyme, olive oil and pepper, and toss very gently to combine. Serve immediately.

Adapted from “Flavor Exposed” by Angelo Sosa

Another Melon Recipe to Try: Cantaloupe Cake

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