Watermelon Gazpacho with Crispy Serrano Ham and Crabmeat
1.5 quart watermelon peeled
4 ounces limejuice
3 green onions chopped
3 teaspoons fish sauce
4 Tablespoons honey
6 ounces pomace olive oil

Place watermelon in a blender with limejuice to make watermelon juice. (Pulse lightly so as not to grind the seeds, but enough to liquefy the melon.) Strain through a medium strainer so that only the seeds are left and the pulp is able to pass through.

This liquid then goes into the blender. Add honey and fish sauce, and turn on blender full speed. Slowly add the olive oil and season with salt to taste. The soup should have a balance of sweet and tart. Adjust to your taste.

3-4 slices of Serrano ham
1/2 pound jumbo lump crab meat

Bake the Serrano ham on a silicone mat at 400 degrees for approximately 5 minutes or until crispy.

Serve in chilled bowls with ham crumbled on top of a good dose of crab (seasoned with a little salt), a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and, if you have them fresh, herbs like mint, cilantro or basil.

Tip: With the leftover crab I like to make a quick salad of pickled rinds and fresh herbs as a lagniappe on the side.
Serves 6

Rio Mar
800 S. Peters St.
252-3474
www.riomarseafood.com