Hi everyone! Hope everyone's well and kicking life in its butt! Well this weekend was a great one. I spent some quality time with the fam and the weather helped too! We were out and about and had ice cream, my son rode the bike again! Can you believe it that he's barely three years old and he's learned to pedal already on his little bike! I love him so much!
For me though, Spring is special in one peculiar way: It marks the beginning of the Mango Season!
Yes, though Mangoes are available all year round (what isn't and the Europeans find it weird) but the ones that are available in the summer are special, and especially the ones from India. The hot weather is ideal ripening mechanism for this luscious, juicy fruit and boy does it blow you away!
Growing up in India, in the Spring/Summer season everyone in the family would look forward to the desert part of the meals. More often than not it was Mangoes in some form or the other. Me and my brother ate those Mangoes in the least civilized manner, as all our faces were smothered with Mango pulp! Not to forget the fight over the seed of the fruit! Who gets that one, as it was a bonus serving and we had to coin toss it out! We made milkshakes out of them, topped them on ice creams, made ice creams out of them, and what not! God, they're so good! I think if there were a stereotype for an Indian person—especially from the North—it would be that he/she liked Mangoes.
There are so many varieties of Mangoes that we barely know a few. Mango is so popular in India, that there is an annual Mango festival held in New Delhi every year, which my dad attends without fail! Yeah he too is a Mango junkie, guess it runs in the family!
So given what this fruit means to me, I thought it was fitting to pay an homage to it, and I've decided to make various things where Mango plays a big role. So in the coming weeks, look out for some Mango Madness on this blog and allow me the pleasure to let you live your Mango life through my recipes!
And to start things off, I decided to dust off an oldie. I actually made this sandwich for my friends who I entertained for my birthday a few years ago.
It was a simpler recipe back then, just some chicken topped with some Mango on a ciabatta roll. But this new recipe takes it to a whole new level! With smoked Chorizo, Cumin and Chipotle blackened Chicken and fresh Mango topped with Chimichurri sauce, this is a savory tropical party in your mouth.
It's smokey from the Chorizo, warm and spicy from the Chicken and sweet from the Mango, and tangy and refreshing from the Chimichurri. Checks all the flavor boxes!
Ok! Now time for the recipe, which is the cherry on top, as it is super simple! Takes barely no time to make, and within 30 minutes you've got this gorgeous looking out of this world sandwich. Let's go.
Mango & Smoked Chorizo Sandwich with Blackened Chicken and Chimichurri
Makes 4 sandwiches
4 Chicken thighs (boneless)
2 links fresh Chorizo (ideally fresh from the meat dept—but if you buy packaged that's fine too)
1 ripe Mango (I got mine from an Indian grocery store)
1 tbsp Cumin powder (I ground mine from seeds)
1 tbsp Chipotle powder
1 tbsp Chilli powder
Salt as needed
Cibatta loaf or rolls
2 cups fresh Cilantro
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup Olive oil
Let's make the Chimichurri first and get it out of the way and into the fridge to get all happy.
In a blender, throw in all the ingredients (chop the garlic into smaller pieces) and pulse a few times and the Chimichurri is done! What?! Yes it is! And did I mention this was a simple drop dead gorgeous recipe?
Next step: The meats.
Gentlemen, start your fires. A trusty heavy pan on high heat is what you'll need, and when that does get hot, slice your Chorizo sausage in half, length wise and throw it on the pan. No need to worry about the casing, as it will slide off easy while the sausage is searing.
In the meantime, in a mortar pestle grind up the Cumin seeds and throw in the Chipotle and the Chilli powders and salt. Mix it around and incorporate well. Rub the Chicken very well on both sides with the spice mix and let it sit for a few minutes. Chicken spice rub, done!
When your Chorizos is nice and browned on both sides, transfer it into a small toaster oven if you have one and turn it to the Keep Warm setting at the lowest temperature, so it doesn't get cold while we make the rest of ingredients for our sandwich.
While the pan is hot throw the Chicken on, and expect to here a sizzle! That's key to get a crispy batch. If the pan isn't hot enough you won't get a good sear. At this point, please refrain from checking on the Chicken and let it do its thing! Flip over after 4 minutes or so, and repeat on the other side.
We're on the tail end of this recipe! After the Chicken is done, take the Mango and peel the skin and slice off the top and lower halves and suck the flesh off the seed as a mid cooking process treat! Yum!
Ok back to your kitchen from heaven! Almost there, slice off a good 2-3 inch wide section of the Ciabatta form your loaf or just slice in half the rolls. Brush the halves with little bit of oil and throw it on the hot pan and toast it for a bit of color and crunch. Just a little.
Now, the layering.
First, lay down some Chimichuriri on each side of the bread.
Second, a piece of Chicken. And a little more Chimichurri please!
Third, the Mango
Fourth the crispy smokey Chorizo and some Chimichurri drizzled on top.
And finally the moment you've been waiting for! Put the cap on this sandwich and slice in half or make a wide-eyed, wild-faced attempt to fit this bad boy between your teeth and bite off a piece of smokey, sweet, savory heaven!
Look at this sandwich! Wall art anyone?
This sandwich came out so good! We thought we were eating at a restaurant, a really high-end restaurant! Trust me, you guys, you've got to make this one at home. It looks good and tastes even better, and guess what if you made this for your friends, chances are you're going to earn some serious ethinc/gourmet/creative food cred.
I love Mango, and it holds a special place in my heart! I can't see loving any other fruit the same way I love this one, and I hope I can also empower you guys to take another look at this King of Fruits when you visit your store again and get creative! Have fun and enjoy!
Loads of love and Nomaste!