Carpaccio of tuna with caramelised watermelon

Carpaccio of tuna with caramelised watermelon

More Home Comforts
Peter Cassidy

This is one of my favourite fish dishes – it’s so simple. The idea comes from a dish I had in a restaurant in New York when I was there on a bit of a food tour. It’s a simpler dish made this way, but the taste is great and it can be made at home. The keys to it are fresh tuna and really good extra virgin olive oil.


Quantity Ingredient
1/4 watermelon, peeled and cut into 1cm thick slices
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 thin slices sourdough bread
4 x 50-75g fresh tuna loin steaks
1 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons very finely chopped chives
1 shallot, very finely chopped
5g unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. Place the watermelon in a resealable bag with a pinch of salt and place in the fridge for two to three days.
  2. Preheat the oven to 150°C.
  3. Toast the bread in a toaster, then slice in half horizontally so you have one toasted side and one untoasted side. Place between two thin baking trays and bake in the oven for 5 minutes until crisp. Remove and cool between the trays.
  4. Spread a sheet of clingfilm on a work surface and lay a piece of tuna on it, then cover with a second sheet of clingfilm. Bat the tuna very gently with a rolling pin so that you have an evenly thin piece, finishing by rolling it flat – about 2mm thick. Repeat with each piece of tuna.
  5. Take a bowl the same size as the centre of the plate you are going to serve on, then turn it upside down and place it on one of the pieces of clingfilmed tuna. Cut around the bowl so you are left with a disc of tuna, then set the disc aside. Repeat with the rest of the tuna. Remove the clingfilm from the trimmings, then chop them very finely and place in a bowl.
  6. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, two-thirds of the chives and shallot, season with salt and pepper, and mix together to form a tuna tartare.
  7. Slice the watermelon into pieces. Heat a frying pan until hot, add the butter, and only when it’s nut-brown add the watermelon and fry on each side for 1 minute, or until browned and hot through. Add a pinch of salt and tip onto a plate.
  8. Place a spoonful of tuna tartare on each piece of toast and place a piece of the fried watermelon on top. Place on a serving plate. Lift the clingfilm off one side of the tuna discs and flip over. Lay them on top of the tartare and lift off the second sheet of clingfilm. Drizzle with the extra virgin olive oil and brush it all over the tuna.
  9. Garnish with the rest of the shallot and chives, and add a squeeze of lemon juice and some pepper.
Home Comforts
British food
classic recipes
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