Our neighbor recently purchased a fancy boiler that sounds a bit like a jet engine, so it reaches a boil in no time at all. In need of something to boil, she decided on crawdads, complete with all the Southern Boil fixin’s: Corn, sausage, and potatoes. Our first attempt at a Neighborly Southern Boil was Crawdad: Interrupted by a failed UPS delivery. Our second attempt, however, was deliciously successful. We happily joined her for the feast.
While she toiled over the boil, we sipped our Flora Farm Inspired Bloody Mary’s. While the Crawdaddies were the star of this show, I brought an appetizer to play a supporting role. I opted for some fresh veg and candied meat. Yes, I said candied. Don’t knock it ‘till you try it, and you really should try it… southern boil or not.
Spiced Cucumber Boats with Candied Chorizo
- English cucumber, sliced into ½ inch rounds
- 4 oz mascarpone cheese
- 3 tsp spicy pesto (*)
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ lime, juiced
- 1 package sliced chorizo sausage
- ¼ c sugar
- 1 package cherry tomatoes
- Olive oil
- Salt & pepper
Slice the tomatoes in half, and place on a lined sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt & pepper. On another lined sheet pan, place the chorizo slices and sprinkle each one liberally with sugar. Bake the tomatoes and Chorizo at 450 degrees for 20 minutes. The tomatoes should be slightly browned. The chorizo will shrink and crisp up and the sugar will be melted. Remove from oven and allow the tomatoes to cool. Transfer the chorizo to some wax paper to cool.
Meanwhile, combine the mascarpone, pesto, garlic powder, ¼ tsp salt, and lime in a small bowl and stir to combine. Using a grapefruit spoon or small knife, scoop a bit of the seeds from each cucumber slice, being careful not to leave a hole on the bottom. Scoop about 1 tsp of mascarpone mix into each cucumber cup. Top with a slice of chorizo and a tomato. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve cold.
(*) Spicy pesto was courtesy of our (new) friend Fabrizio of the Italian Job in Cabo.