Friday, November 2, 2012

Baked Watermelon Steak Recipe and Method- Raw Fish/Sashimi Replacement for Sushi

 I got a watermelon from the reduced rack the other day. They're nearly out of season, and hence they don't have the best texture or taste, so its not so fun to just eat them plain. In the past, when I had watermelon like this, I made watermelon gazpacho and watermelon fruit leather, but I wanted to try something new. 
Google clued me in that there was something called "grilled watermelon steak", and it sounded intriguing. Apparently there's this restaurant somewhere in New England that came up with this idea to bake watermelon, and there are many copies of that version on the internet, and they contain butter and cream sherry, two things I either don't have or can't use, but I still wanted to try out the idea. According to the websites, the texture of this grilled watermelon steak was similar to pan seared mahi mahi tuna, but never having eaten it, I had no clue what type of texture to expect.

I was very thrilled with the results.

I'm a big sushi fan. Always was, and always will be. While I sometimes make vegetarian homemade sushi, the part of the sushi I really like best is the raw fish; I really enjoy the texture- smooth, soft, with a bit of a bite. I sometimes order nigiri, which is just slices of raw fish on top of balls of sushi rice. I also sometimes get sashimi, which is just plain slices of raw fish, because that's my favorite part!

Well, why am I talking about sushi and raw fish?

Well, because when you bake watermelon in this method, it has the same exact texture as raw fish, so if you're a raw fish lover, but don't make it at home because of safety reasons, or because of affordability, making baked watermelon this way is a good replacement.  It's also a good thing to do with watermelon which isn't in the best condition.

To make your watermelon sashimi, what you need to do is take a watermelon, cut off the rind, slice it up in slices an inch to two inches thick. Place it in a baking dish, cover it with flavorings and a drop of oil, then bake it in the oven at 350 for 2 hours, or until the liquid disappears and it starts getting browned on one edge, flip it over, and cook it until it's browned on the other.

So far I've made this with balsamic vinegar, salt, and olive oil, and a different time with soy sauce and worcestershire sauce with some coconut oil. 
They both tasted good, but not fishy.
Next time I make this, I want to try to make it taste more fishy, to be an even better sashimi replacement, by drizzling it with a bit of homemade fish sauce, soy sauce, and ginger, and a bit of coconut oil. 

Then, I'll be making watermelon steak sushi and sashimi.

Can't wait!

In the meantime, I'll just enjoy my balsamic watermelon sashimi.

Update: I made my watermelon sashimi, and the results were amazing! I cooked one batch of the watermelon in the liquid from my homemade pickled ginger, and another batch in the pickled ginger liquid, fish sauce, and soy sauce. Both were terrific.

P.S. This works better if your watermelon is seedless, but it also works fine with seeded watermelons; you don't have to remove the seeds.

Do you like sushi? Do you like raw fish? The flavor or the texture? Would you eat something that you were told had the texture of raw fish?
What do you do with watermelons that aren't in the best condition, either not too sweet or somewhat mealy?
Does this look like a recipe/technique you'd try?

Linking up to Monday ManiaHomestead Blog Hop, Allergy Free Wednesday 


  1. I don't like the taste (or smell) of watermelon but I love pickled watermelon rind (recipe here: http://www.preppypinkcrocodile.com/2011/08/pickled-watermelon-rinds-story-and.html ) and I've even made watermelon jelly (recipe here: http://www.preppypinkcrocodile.com/2011/08/more-canning-watermelon-jelly.html )


  2. Flaxseed oil gives it that fishy smell and taste. Thursdayswithwanda.com mentions this and that's how I learned about it. I do need to try your idea with the ginger juice though. Trying to get that sweetness out of the watermelon.


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