Grilled Okra And Cantaloupe Salad With Piri Piri Dressing



20 min


30 min

Grilled Okra And Cantaloupe Salad With Piri Piri Dressing

(Recipe: Ryan Barclay; Produced by Stephanie Han Kim; Photo, Christie Vuong; Food styling, Ryan Barclay; Prop Styling, Catherine Doherty)

It may be an unusual combo, but this warm salad of sweet melon, smoky cauliflower and charred okra is a delicious medley. Serve it with toast to soak up the extra sauce.—Ryan Barclay


  • 225 g okra , (12 to 16 pieces)
  • 1 small caulilower , trimmed and cut in medium florets (about 4 cups)
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil , divided
  • salt and pepper , to taste
  • 1 340 ml jar water-packed roasted red peppers , drained
  • 1 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves , divided
  • 7 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp hot smoked paprika
  • 2 garlic cloves , peeled
  • 1/2 cantaloupe , peeled and cut in 1 1/2-in.-thick slices
  • 8 radicchio , leaves, torn
  • 1/4 cup hulled pumpkin seeds


  1. Preheat barbecue to medium-high. Using 4 metal skewers, double-skewer okra, arranging 6 to 8 pieces crosswise over each pair of skewers (or use wooden skewers that have been soaked for 30 min).
  2. Toss cauliflower with 2 tsp oil in a large bowl; season lightly with salt and pepper. Transfer cauliflower to a grill basket. Grill, lid
    closed but opening to turn occasionally, until browned and tender-crisp, 12 min.
  3. Meanwhile, combine red peppers, 1/2 cup cilantro, lemon juice, paprika, garlic and 2 tbsp oil in a small blender or food processor; blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. About 5 min before cauliflower is done, brush okra skewers with remaining 1 tsp oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Add okra skewers and cantaloupe slices to grill. Continue to grill with lid closed, turning skewers and cantaloupe halfway, until okra is charred and tender-crisp, and cantaloupe is caramelized and grill-marked.
  5. On a large platter or 4 serving plates, arrange radicchio. Top with warm cauliflower, okra and cantaloupe. Drizzle with desired amount of dressing. Scatter with remaining 1/2 cup cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Serve remaining dressing on the side.
A close up of grilled okra on two wood skewers on a white background

(Photo: Christie Vuong)

Grilling tip: Double-skewering the okra makes it easy to turn the pieces on the grill and keeps them from falling through the grates.

Cantaloupe subsitutions: You can substitute any in-season fruit for the cantaloupe: firm ripe pears, peaches or apricots. You may need to chop and skewer them before grilling.

How to pick melons:

  • The melon should be free of dents and feel heavy for its size.
  • The cantaloupe rind should be firm but yield a little to the touch.
  • The melon should smell slightly sweet.

Ryan’s favourite jarred peppers:

  • Savör Organic Roasted Red peppers, $6.99,
  • Longos Sliced Roasted Red Peppers, $2.99,
  • Unico Flame-Roasted Peppers,