Thai Sausage Salad
Chinese influence in Thai culture can be found everywhere, including Thai cuisine. This simple Thai salad features a Chinese sausage called lap cheong. This type of Chinese sausage is a hard, slightly sweet pork sausage similar in texture to Italian pepperoni and can be found in any Chinese market. I’ve even seen it in some of our big supermarket chains here in Las Vegas, including Costco. It’s used in many stir fries, fried rice, appetizers and salads.
This salad is one of my all-time favorite recipes, especially when a good friend brings us a particularly nice brand of Chinese sausage she buys in Los Angeles’ Chinatown. Because this salad is so light and refreshing, it’s especially good during hot summer months, but I love it so much I make it all year round. The sausage only requires a quick stir fry before combining with the cucumbers and bean sprouts. It’s dressed with a tart lime dressing that is a perfect match for the slightly sweet, rich sausage. Served with steamed jasmine rice, it makes an easy main dish salad.
Thai Sausage Salad
5-6 Chinese sausages
2 large cucumbers
1 cup fresh bean sprouts
4 green onions
Fresh flat leaf parsley or cilantro leaves for garnish
1 thinly sliced hot, fresh red chili pepper (optional)
Cooked jasmine rice
½ cup fresh lime juice
3 teaspoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce
In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Taste and adjust with more sugar or fish sauce if needed (some limes are more tart than others). Set aside.
Slice the sausage thinly on the diagonal. Place in a non stick skillet over medium heat and sauté until the edges are slightly browned and sausage is cooked thru, about 5 minutes. Don’t over cook. Set aside to cool.
Peel the cucumbers, slice thinly and place in a large bowl. Thinly slice the green onions on the diagonal and add to the bowl. Add the bean sprouts, cooked sausage and the dressing. Lightly toss and serve on plates with jasmine rice on the same plate. Garnish with a few slivers of sliced hot chili pepper, if desired, and a few leaves of fresh parsley or cilantro.
Serves 2 as a main course salad.