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Grilled Sausages with Chowchow + Tomato Watermelon Salad

Active Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
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Why we love it:

Chowchow is a lightly pickled slaw of sorts that’s amazing on sausages, grilled meats, fried eggs, veggies, rice bowls, etc. But, you can also just serve it as a sauerkraut style side dish. Our version is very fresh and simple as is and it will get stronger as it sits. So, make the whole head of cabbage and put it in a jar - it will keep in your fridge for a month!


  • 5 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 teaspoon White Sugar
  • 14 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 12 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 head Savoy Cabbage (small, or Green Cabbage, or bag of coleslaw mix)
  • 2 Carrots (grated)
  • 1 Shallot
  • 1 ear Corn
  • 3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 Sausages (we used kielbasa cut in segments for this photo)
  • 1 Watermelon
  • 1 pint Cherry Tomatoes
  • 14 bunch Basil
  • 4 Torpedo Rolls (or hot dog buns)

Cooking Instructions

  • 1. CHOW CHOW

    In a small pot, bring 4 Tablespoons of vinegar, 1 Tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon sugar to a boil. Stir it to make sure the salt and sugar dissolve. As soon as it has, turn off the heat. Stir in the ¼ teaspoon turmeric and ½ teaspoon dijon.

    Meanwhile, cut the cabbage in half then quarters and remove the core from the center. Slice each quarter into very fine ribbons, as thin as you can go. Then, cut them in half so they’re shorter in length. Place cabbage in a large bowl.

    Grate the carrot on a box grater and add to the cabbage.
    Finely mince the shallot and add it. If you’re worried about raw onion flavor, you can add it instead to the hot vinegar which will cook off the rawness of the shallot.
    Shuck the corn and slice off the kernels.

    Toss the cabbage and veggies to combine. Then pour the hot vinegar over top. Add 3 Tablespoons olive oil and toss to combine. Press on the cabbage to pack it into the bowl with the hot vinegar. Place a heavy pot (like you’d cook pasta in perhaps, or whatever fits into the bowl) on top of the cabbage to put a little pressure on it. Let this sit for 15 minutes and up to overnight.

  • 2. SAUSAGE

    If using a BBQ grill light it! Otherwise, get a large grill pan and set it over medium high heat. Grill the sausages until they’re hot throughout and blistered to your liking. If using a pan, you might want to add a bit of butter or a drizzle of oil to get the cooking started, but depending on the sausage and you preference, you may not need to.


    Meanwhile, make the watermelon salad. Dice a small “personal” watermelon (as they’re calling them now), into small cubes about the size of a cherry tomato. Place in a bowl

    Halve the cherry tomatoes and add them to the watermelon.

    Tear or slice up the basil leaves. Add them.

    Add the remaining Tablespoon of cider vinegar. Drizzle with about 1 teaspoon of olive oil and a true pinch of salt (just use your forefinger and thumb and grab a few flakes. You can always add more but don’t want to make the salad salty. A tiny amount just heightens and balances the flavors).

    Gently toss the salad to combine.

  • 4. SERVING

    If desired, toast the buns. Place a sausage in each and generously heap with chowchow - either warm, or cold if you’ve made it in advance. Serve with the watermelon salad on the side.

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    use GF bread or rolls, or serve without a bun
  • PALEO:
    double up the sausage portion and serve without a bun
    is lighter and textured but green cabbage is just fine and red cabbage would be pretty!
  • CORN:
    use 1 cup or frozen kernels, or omit. Consider adding chopped red or green bell pepper instead!
    any sausage you like is just fine here. Since the dish is simple though, make it something delicious and high quality
    use cantaloupe, or use diced peaches! You could also just make an all tomato salad if you have a plethora on hand from your garden

Prep Ahead & Use It Up

  1. Chowchow is a great condiment that is pickled, so you can make this 7 – 10 days ahead and use it on a bunch of things!
  2. Watermelon salad is great for a few days but will collect liquid. Still ok to eat!
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