It was the Labour Day long weekend here in Sydney and the clocks went back marking the start of longer days and balmy nights. Right on cue we had the first truly warm day of the season and I could smell all the neighbourhood grills being fired up, ours included. With the start of barbecue season the search is on for salads that pair well with grilled meats, poultry and seafood. I have a list of staple salads that I make regularly like potato salad, coleslaw and tomato salads but this grilled salad with its Tex-Mex overtones is a little more unusual and so delicious. You can make it as hot or as mild as you like but I think it tastes best with a little bit of a kick. If you’re not a fan of Chorizo you can leave it out, or replace it with another type of sausage. Keeping the protein element does make this quite a substantial side dish which can be good or bad depending on what you’re pairing it with but it’s just as tasty without the chorizo if you prefer a lighter salad. I’ll be making this quite a lot over the coming months and it’s also a great do ahead recipe to take along to a picnic or to someone else’s barbecue.
Ingredients – Serves 4 generously Adapted from Delicious Magazine
2 corn on the cob
400g can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 avocado, peeled and chopped
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 small red onion, sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1-2 Jalapeño chillies or green chillies, sliced (use more or less depending on how much heat you want)
Grated zest and juice of 2 limes
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped coriander
4 chorizo sausages, sliced on an angle – you can replace with another type of sausage if you prefer
Cook corn in salted boiling water for 10 minutes or until just tender. Drain and place on a hot griddle pan for a few minutes to get some nice charring on the corn, remove and let cool slightly. The charring of the corn is optional and if you want you can skip this step. When the corn is cool enough to handle cut the kernels off the cob and place in a bowl with the black beans, avocado, tomatoes, coriander and onion. Set aside.
In a small bowl combine, cumin, lime zest and juice, vinegar, the rest of the chillies and the oil. Season with salt and then toss the salad with the dressing. Heat a lightly oiled chargrill pan or a non stick fry pan over high heat. Grill the chorizo slices for 1-2 minutes on each side until crisp and cooked through. Drain on paper towel then toss through the salad.
If you want to make this ahead of time get all the ingredients prepped and them dress at the last minute but it’s best to keep the chorizo at room temperature once it has been cooked. I sometimes make the salad in advance and then grill the chorizo on the bbq along with what ever else we are grilling then add it to the salad just before serving.