Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Cantaloupe-Chorizo Salad

It's cantaloupe season! That means icy cold, juicy melon chunks straight from the fridge--the perfect antidote to super summer heat. And since it almost hit 80º today, you know we're in need of some serious cooling. Phew! How about a no-cook meal featuring that vitamins A-, B-, C-, and potassium-packed fruit?

Meanwhile, Lynne Rossetto Kasper has been sending me emails lately, left and right. This woman cannot get enough of me or any of the other thousands of people who subscribe to her weekly newsletter but today she shot me a real winner of a recipe. With the CSA lettuce hanging out in my fridge, and the gigantor cantaloupe I just lugged home taking up precious shelf space, I decided to clean both out in one fell swoop. Oh, and make it all portable so I could meet up with David for lunch (hence, the cell phone photos).

All I needed was the sausage, no problem: spicy chorizo comes dried in most markets around here. But since that package of dried was so expensive and the individual links from the butcher were so not, I just grabbed a lone link and baked it off at home. If you can't find chorizo, linguica or andouille will sub in just fine.

Cantaloupe-Chorizo Salad
(adapted from LRK, see above; serves 1-2; potentially ready in 15 minutes or less)

1 small garlic clove, minced
sprinkle red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp fish sauce
2-3 Tbsp water
3 Tbsp rice wine or apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp honey, agave, or sugar

Lettuce for two: romaine, mesclun mix, or some nice combination thereof
1 cup 1-inch chunks of cantaloupe
6 inches chorizo, sliced thin*
1/4 white onion, sliced thin
2 Tbsp mint, chopped
2-3 Tbsp chopped peanuts or almonds
  1. Throw together dressing ingredients and shake well. Set aside.
  2. Make a bed of lettuce and top with fruit, sausage, onion, mint, and nuts and drizzle dressing over top. *If you are working with already cooked sausage, simply slice it into bite-size pieces. If you are like me and only wanted to buy enough for the one meal (i.e. a single link from the butcher), simply cook it in the oven at 350º for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through. Slice down the middle longways and open it out for faster cooking.

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