Photo by Krishna Dayanidhi

Ingredients:

Watermelon Soup:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 1/2 jalapeño pepper, sliced
  • 4 cups watermelon juice, divided
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons wildflower honey
  • Kosher salt to taste

Jumbo Lump Crab Salad:

  • 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, diced
  • 1 cup diced watermelon
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon roughly chopped lemon verbena
  • 1 tablespoon roughly chopped mint
  • 1 tablespoon toasted and crushed coriander seeds
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • Kosher salt to taste

Garnish:

  • Micro-cilantro
  • Fleur de sel

This recipe contains: Shellfish

Recipe notes: To obtain watermelon juice, purchase a watermelon that weighs at least 7 pounds. Slice the watermelon in half and scoop out the flesh. Purée the flesh in batches in a blender; blending will release the water stored in the flesh. Using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the juice into a medium bowl.

RECIPE

Watermelon Soup and Jumbo Lump Crab Salad

Marc Forgione

Restaurant Marc Forgione, NYC and American Cut by Forgione at Revel, Atlantic City, NJ

Marc Forgione of Restaurant Marc Forgione prepared this refreshing recipe at the 2009 Chefs & Champagne® New York. It’s light and complex, and the soup’s brilliant hue is gorgeous.

Yield: 6 servings

Method:

For the watermelon soup, place a medium saucepan over low heat and add the olive oil. Add the ginger, shallots, and jalapeño pepper and sauté until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add half of the watermelon juice and increase the heat to high. When the juice begins to boil, immediately remove from heat. Combine the contents of the pan with the other half of the watermelon juice in a mixing bowl. Purée the mixture in batches, blending for 10 seconds per batch. Using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the soup into a bowl placed in a larger bowl of ice. Season the soup with the rice wine vinegar, sugar, honey, and kosher salt, adding only the minimum amounts at first. (The actual amounts you'll need will depend on the sweetness of the watermelon juice.) Taste and adjust if needed. Chill for about 1 hour.

For the crab salad, pick through the crabmeat for shells and bones. In a large bowl, combine the crabmeat, jalapeño pepper, watermelon, cilantro, lemon verbena, mint, coriander seeds, olive oil, and lime juice. Season with kosher salt to taste. Chill until ready to use.

Divide the salad among 6 chilled bowls and pour a generous half cup (about 5 ounces) of the soup into each bowl. Top with micro-cilantro and fleur de sel.