This sweet, spicy, and punchy upgrade to classic slabs of salted watermelon is the palate-pleasing appetizer your cookout guests deserve, Fresh coconut water is much sweeter, and has a greater depth of flavor than bottled versions, so crack open a coconut if you can. If using store-bought, select a brand with no additives for the best tasting crudo. Reserve the strained spicy marinade to use as a fruity base for a tequila cocktail.

Paige Grandjean
June 2020

Gallery

Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Recipe Summary

active:
20 mins
total:
2 hrs 20 mins
Yield:
6
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Cut watermelon into 12 (3- x 2 1/2- x 1/2-inch) wedges with rind attached; set aside. Reserve remaining watermelon for another use. Stir together coconut water, lime juice, ginger, 2 sliced chiles, and 1/2 tablespoon sugar in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Place watermelon wedges in dish in a single layer; cover and chill at least 2 hours or up to overnight.

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  • Just before serving, remove watermelon from marinade; discard marinade (or strain and reserve for cocktails). Arrange watermelon on a chilled serving platter; drizzle with olive oil. Top watermelon evenly with coconut, fried shallots, and remaining chile slices.

  • Stir together cilantro, flaky salt, lime zest, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon sugar. Sprinkle over watermelon. Serve immediately.

Make Ahead

Watermelon can be marinated up to 8 hours or overnight.

Notes

For a refreshingly cold bite, chill the serving platter in the freezer for 15 minutes before plating the crudo.

Suggested Pairing

Lemon-appley Prosecco.