Chorizo Taco Salad with Corn Salsa

Last week I picked up a pint of beautiful cherry tomatoes at The Root Cellar. I popped a whole one in my mouth and it was like candy (which is a wonder because I didn’t even like tomatoes really until I got to college). I was so happy to finally have a tasty tomato after months of winter. But the sun was shining that day in Columbia, and I decided to make a meal that would feel like my perennially warm home of Los Angeles: a light and fresh taco salad.

I love beans and cheese too, but this was not a day for those. This day was about the fresh tomatoes and greens I had picked up. I made a sweet and spicy corn salsa with the cherry tomatoes. Then, I filled the tacos with a chorizo and ground beef mixture, green peppers and red onions (cooked, but still tender), the salsa, sour cream and cilantro. I put the tacos on top of a bed of greens for presentation, then we went out to my front porch, and smashed the tacos and mixed the whole thing together to eat as a salad.

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Caramelized Onions

If you’ve read some of my other posts, you’d start to get the idea that patience is a virtue I just don’t have. Truth is, I just don’t have patience when I’m hungry. I’ll spend hours cooking something if I’ve mentally and physically prepared myself for it. If I haven’t, that’s when I look for shortcuts…and snacks.


Caramelized onions, however, don’t have any shortcuts. Oh sure, you can get some tasty soft onions in a lot less time, but to get this marmalade texture and complex taste, you will let them cook for four hours and you will like it.


I took the advice of Russ Parsons and spent the good part of a Saturday transforming crisp, pungent onions into a sweet and savory paste. The reward goes a long way. Caramelized onions are great on steaks, and they make some of the best sandwiches. (I happened to have La Brea Bakery bread and smoked gouda that same week, and oh wow, did I lunch like a queen for a few days.)


Day to day, onions aren’t too glamorous. But give them four hours to get ready, and they can be downright elegant.

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