Sweet corn, that eagerly anticipated summer staple, is arriving in local markets. I procured a tasty dozen at a Produce Junction in Margate, N.J., last weekend, and it was quite heavenly.
I cooked all 12 ears, knowing that we would likely only consume a few. I had a method to my madness — corn salad with the leftovers.
Confession: I loathe scraping the kernels off the cob. It’s messy and tedious, and the yield per ear is rather low. But the results are so delicious and versatile that I can usually convince myself to do it for the duration of corn’s short season.
One great thing about this salad is its versatility. I went in a Mexican direction and served it with barbecued chicken. But by varying the ingredients, you can easily pair this with Italian, Greek, Indian … really, any flavor profile you like. Suggested alternatives follow the recipe.
Mexican Corn Salad
Serves four as a side dish
2 cups corn kernels (from 6 ears cooked corn)
1 small shallot, finely minced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
12 cherry tomatoes, halved (or quartered if large)
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
⅛ teaspoon chipotle powder (or your pepper of choice)
Juice of ½ lime
1 tablespoon olive oil
Mix all the ingredients in a medium bowl. Allow the salad to sit for at least 30 minutes before serving to let the flavors blend.
Greek Corn Salad: Omit the cilantro, cumin, chipotle and lime. Instead, use fresh dill, lemon juice and a small clove of minced garlic.
Italian Corn Salad: Swap the cilantro, cumin, chipotle and lime for basil and balsamic.
Indian Corn Salad: Swap the chipotle for curry powder.