A Sarcastic Appetite

Summer Salad
August 1, 2010, 10:01 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

People seem to go bonkers this time every year over tomatoes and corn, with the kind of fanaticism normally seen in the pre-teen set when Miley Cyrus tickets go on sale. I didn’t really understand it, and let me tell you: I still don’t understand the bizarre names for corn and heirloom tomatoes. “Country Gentlemen,” “Silver Queen,” and “Triple Play” are all varities of the former, while “Aunt Ginny’s Purple,” “Berkeley Tie-Dye Pink,” and “Dinner Plate” are varieties of the latter. Huh.

I especially didn’t understand the two together…until I made this salad, that is. I’m not about to fall all over myself to buy 17 copies of Can’t Be Tamed (thanks, Wikipedia), but I will say that tomatoes, corn, and basil will be making more frequent appearances in my kitchen this month.

The corn gets cut from the cob and sauteed in some butter with the tomatoes and then the mozzarella, which lets it melt just slightly before being poured over some arugula. Throw the diced avocados on top and then pour an herby vinaigrette over the whole thing – and look, you have a pretty layered salad with very little effort! Which of course leaves more time to devote to learning all the words to “Party in the U.S.A”…or the Heirloom Tomato Seeds list. Whatever floats your boat.

Summer Salad

Adapted from Sara Foster’s Fresh Every Day. Serves 4ish.

2 ears of sweet corn, shucked and de-cobbed

2 tbsp. butter

1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

4 oz. fresh mozzarella, diced

6-8 basil leaves, julienned (cut into thin strips)

a couple handfuls of fresh baby arugula

1 avocado

lots of salt and pepper

Shuck the corn and cut off the corn from each cob. Saute the butter in a large pan, then add the corn and some salt and pepper. Heat for a few minutes, then add the tomato halves and the mozzarella. Remove from heat once the mozzarella starts to melt. Meanwhile, add the handfuls of arugula to a large salad bowl. Dice the avocado, and squeeze a little lemon juice over the cut pieces to prevent browning. Pour the corn and tomato mixture over the arugula, then top with the diced avocado. Pour the Herb Vinaigrette over everything (recipe below).

Herb Vinaigrette

1/3 c. red wine vinegar

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

5 fresh basil leaves, julienned

about 2/3 – 3/4 c. olive oil

lots of salt and pepper

Add everything but the olive oil to a measuring cup and whisk to combine. While whisking, stream the olive oil in. Taste and correct seasoning.

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