The thing about chorizo is, when it’s good, it’s big, smoky, spicy, eyes-to-the-back-of-your-head good.
When it’s bad, it’s crusty, greasy, day-old 7-Eleven hot dog bad. Uck.
There are lots of things that fit this category – shrimp, pizza, tomatoes, burgers, fish and chips, mixed drinks – the kind of stuff you can’t stop eating when it’s good. But when it’s not good, even the thought can make you gag a little.
Chorizo especially. Locally made Spanish-style chorizo is by far my favorite. Dried and aged, you’ll usually find it on a plate with other charcuterie – but you can cook with it too. I sautéed sugar snap peas, red spring onions and Fatted Calf chorizo, drizzled it with cilantro-lime oil, and soaked up the juices with slices of a brick-oven baguette. Please don’t make this with pre-packaged, gooey Mexican chorizo. If you do, you’ll never come back to Fork me Noodle. You’ll think all of my recipes are big heaping piles of dirty grease. And they’re not. Really, I swear! (And, Mexican chorizo is raw, Spanish is cooked. A good thing to remember…)
Somewhere between defining our target audience and writing the management profile, I strolled around the farmers’ market, letting my eyes adjust to life beyond a computer screen. Sugar snap peas, asparagus, strawberries, spring onions, fresh herbs, live music and a New Orlean’s style iced coffee from Blue Bottle. I got home, and this plate was on the table minutes later. Serve it over pasta or rice for a more substantive meal, or just clean your plate with slices of soft bread.
Chorizo and Snap Peas with Cilantro-Lime Olive Oil
The amount will depend on how many people, but use at least twice as much snap peas than chorizo.
- 1 pound snap peas
- 1/3 – 1/2 pound dried, Spanish-style chorizo, sliced thin
- 3 spring red onions, sliced thin, dark green parts removed
- 1 fresh baguette, sliced
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- Zest and juice from half a lime
- Pinch of salt
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Place a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil to coat the pan. When hot but not smoking, add the sugar snap peas. Cook for 2 minutes, shake the pan around, and cook for 3 more minutes. They should be bright green, a tad charred, and a little “puffed.” Add the onions and chorizo, and turn the heat down to medium. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, or until onions start to brown.
Combine zest, juice and salt in a bowl Slowly stream in olive oil while whisking. Drizzle on top of snap peas and chorizo before serving, with bread on the side.