Sunday, November 18, 2007

Chorizo and feta salad

This is a good salad. I was a little worried that some of the flavours wouldn't mesh, but my instincts were right. This was delicious; a real melange of textures and flavours, smooth and crunchy mixing so well with salty and mild. The only thing I would change is to add one more cucumber. That's the perils of freestyling sometimes: ratios can be hard to guess.

  • A wedge of Bulgarian feta.
  • One Chorizo sausage
  • Some mesclun salad mix
  • some fresh or frozen peas
  • a cucumber
  • eight or so small truss tomatoes
  • some dry white, ciabatta style bread
  • a lemon
  • olive oil
  • vinegar
  • salt and pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 200' celsius. Dice the Chorizo finely, put it in a large pot/pan and put it on a low heat, stirring occasionally - not too much, we want some caramelisation.

Cube the bread, pop it on a tray, and put it in the oven.

Peel the cucumber's skin, and then peel the rest of it into ribbons. Add it into a bowl with the mesclun, and the peas (thawed/cooked if they're frozen, and there is nothing wrong with frozen peas, don't let anyone tell you otherwise).

Cut the feta roughly into cubes. Treat it rough, we want some crumbling action here. Add that to your big salad bowl.

By now the Chorizo should be hissing like a cut snake, and your kitchen filling up with a delicious smoky aroma. The bottom of the pan will have a disturbingly large amount of fat in it. Take the bread/croutons out of the oven, chuck them in the pan, and crank the heat up high. Stir it, stir it like you just don't care! (this is smoky, so unless you have a range hood, watch out!)

The croutons will soak up the fat, and become even crunchier. Once you're happy with their delicious toastiness, turn the heat off.

Slice the truss tomatoes into wedges, sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle with balsamic or red wine vinegar, and pop em into the oven for 10-15 minutes.

Whilst that's semi-baking, combine the lemon juice and olive oil, salt and pepper, and shake it to make a light vinaigrette.

Take your tomatoes out, toss the salad with the chorizo and crouton mix, and the lay the tomatoes on top. Drizzle with the dressing (not too much! There's plenty of acidic things in this dish already). And you're done. Yum, a great, light summer meal.



At 9:58 am , Blogger Tamtims said...

I can't see the Chorizo!! Not as big as i expected...

At 12:25 am , Blogger Sarah said...

Mmmmmm... I know it's partly the fact I've been living on fruit juice, yoghurt and assorted mushy things for the past 3 days, but this really got my mouth watering!

Any recommendations on how to buy a good chorizo? The best-flavoured ones I've ever found were inedible because of all the huge quantities of gristle chunks, but all the others have either been not really chorizos at all, or sort of a medium between regular pork sausage and chorizo. Nothing with the fantastic smokey, spicy flavour but only an acceptable amount of gristle... is it just a matter of keep trying until I find a good one?

At 1:43 pm , Blogger patrick said...

I had to chop it up real fine - partly for the reasons that Sarah alludes to, but also that getting a mouthful is a tricky endeavour.

re: good chorizo, hmmm, it's been a long time since I lived in Brisbane! There's some good delis in West End that should be able to satisfy that craving...

They are almost always on the fatty, gristly side, however (at least it seems in Australia in my experience), which is why I always chop them quite finely. Putting that fella in a hot dog just wouldn't work.

Also, really cooking them softens up that fat.

I don't know where the spainish stalls at food fairs get theirs; so soft and meaty and delicious. I have never seen its like in stores.

At 5:08 pm , Blogger Sarah said...

Yeah I can handle the fat- it melts when it's hot, but it's the unchewable gristle that really gets me... I'll just keep trying I guess!


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