Fresh corn salad
A classic summer salad with a Mediterranean twist.
Corn came into Israeli markets just this past week – just in time for summer salads. Yes, summer’s already well on its way here. People are seizing every chance to get the grill out and barbecue; you can smell the roasting chicken and meat around the neighborhood on warm evenings. And what goes better with grilled food than a few refreshing salads? Corn salad is a summer favorite. It’s easy to make, packs well in a closed container, and is ready to serve without need for further dressing.
Classic corn salad gets a little Mediterranean twist in this recipe. A light oil and vinegar dressing brings out corn’s sweetness; chopped bell peppers add a sweetness of their own, and fresh green herbs add lively flavor. It’s a lighter, healthier corn salad than the versions that have the corn swimming in mayonnaise. No mayonnaise means that it’s also less likely to spoil in the heat when you take it on a picnic, although for safety, all cooked foods that travel should be kept cool.
Fresh corn arrives at Israeli markets already rather mature. We seldom see young sweet corn. So my instructions say to cook 5-10 minutes, but if you’re working with lovely, young farm corn, three minutes might be enough. Keep your eye on the pot while the corn cooks, and when you see it change color, taste it. If it’s tender, drain it right away.
Traditional recipes call for steaming the corn on its cobs, but I like to cut the kernels off while the corn’s still raw, and then cook them. The cob does contribute flavor, but to me, it makes more sense to slice the kernels off and drain them, rather than handling hot cobs. Cooked until just tender, the kernels cook faster and also cool down faster. So it’s up to you; either way makes delicious corn salad.
- 4 cups fresh, raw corn, sliced off the cobs
- 1 cup red bell peppers, chopped
- 3/4 cup scallions, chopped
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Salt and pepper to taste
Have 8 cups of water boiling in a large saucepan.
Drop the corn kernels in, add a little salt, and cover.
Cook 5-10 minutes, or until the kernels are tender.
Drain and put the kernels in a large bowl.
Stir the corn gently with a wooden spoon, to encourage cooling down, but after about 5 minutes, and while it’s still warm, mix in the oil and vinegar. Add salt and pepper.
Add peppers; mix. Add scallions and cilantro, mix again.
Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
That’s it! Easy and quick. And everybody loves it.
Tips and notes:
Substitute parsley for the cilantro if preferred.
This salad keeps 2 days in the refrigerator if covered tightly.