Crispy Salad with Merguez Sausage and Kefir-Harissa Dressing

This salad manages to be intensely flavorful and hearty, yet still bright and refreshing. The hot spice of the sausage and harissa is cooled by the mint and cucumber. It’s a great early spring salad, when the weather is shifty as are our appetites. Serves 4.

By Erin Wade • Photography by Melanie Grizzel

Easy

Crispy Salad with Merguez Sausage and Kefir-Harissa Dressing

Ingredients

For 1 Batch(es)

For the dressing:

  • 2 cups plain kefir
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup(s) hot harissa
  • 1 teaspoon(s) salt

For the sausage:

  • 3/4 teaspoon(s) cumin seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon(s) coriander seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon(s) fennel seeds
  • 1 pound(s) ground lamb
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon(s) paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) cayenne

For the salad:

  • 1 cucumber(s) diced
  • 1 bunch(es) mint (chiffonade)
  • 1 bunch(es) kale, washed, stemmed & finely chopped
  • 1 pound(s) cooked, crumbled merguez sausage
  • Kefir-harissa dressing, to taste

Crispy Salad with Merguez Sausage and Kefir-Harissa Dressing Directions

  1. For the dressing:
  2. Whisk together all of the ingredients in a bowl. Seriously, that’s it. Set aside.
  3. For the sausage:
  4. Toast the cumin, coriander and fennel seeds in a hot skillet until fragrant, then grind in a coffee or spice grinder. Place the lamb in a large bowl, add the spices and all the other ingredients, then mush everything together.
  5. Heat a skillet to medium-high heat, splash it with a little olive oil, then add the sausage mixture—breaking it up into pieces with a wooden spoon to brown and cook evenly. The sausage should be brown on the outside and slightly pink on the inside. Remove and place on a paper towel to drain.
  6. For the salad:
  7. Toss together everything but the dressing in a large stainless bowl (I like the sausage crumbles to be just slightly cooled—warm but not hot.) Drizzle the dressing in a few big circles around the ingredients then use your hands to toss and distribute. 

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