there are some foods i can only eat in winter. minestrone, stew, pumpkin soup… hot, hearty, filling foods. i imagine most of you are like me. it is a rare occasion indeed when i arrive indoors, red nosed and teeth chattering in the dead of winter, and think to myself, ‘golly i fancy myself some salad for dinner’.
same goes for summer. the warming dishes i crave in the cold months tend to disgust me on those hot summer evenings. i want fish, fresh veggies and fruit. and yes, bikini body season may have something to do with this way of thinking.
a bit of a random stream on consciousness perhaps, but i was musing on summer foods while whipping up this tasty salad the other day. we’ve had so few truly glorious summer days so far this season, that the second the sun comes out i’m embracing the weather the best way i know how – in the kitchen. next time the temperature rises i’m hitting up this idea for spiked watermelon for sure. and after trying out this sweetcorn summer salad for the first time recently, i’m locking it in as my hot weather staple. perfect for barbecues, picnics, lunch or a side dish for a healthy brunch or dinner. so versatile!
i’m a great advocate of canned sweetcorn. who would ever bother cooking (unless i’m serving corn on the cob), let alone de-kerneling (is that a word? i’m trademarking it if not) it yourself? but after reading this recipe on the fabulous joy the baker blog, i decided to give it a whirl. and you know what? it was no trouble at all. and tasted so good.
i felt all virtuous and holier than thou after too, as i bought my corn locally from my organic grocer. take that tesco! anyway, the combo of sweet pebbles of corn, with creamy avocado and zesty lime juice is heaven, and a salty kick of bacon takes it to the next level, making a real meal of this salad. if you’re serving as a side dish, maybe leave the bacon out. not to be bossy. you do what you like.
3 ears of raw corn
1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half (or bigger ones, quartered)
3 spring onions, chopped
1 avocado, diced
3 bacon rashers, cooked and diced (or use pancetta, easy peasy)
juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp good olive oil
shuck your corn, getting rid of all the leaves and strings. using a griddle, grill your corn, rotating until charred on all sides. set aside to cool. once you can handle it easily, slice off the kernels – the aim here is to keep the majority of your corn on the work surface. expect that some will go flying across the kitchen, beneath the benches, and you’ll inevitably discover a few errant kernels lodged behind the toaster and next to the butter dish in a few days. all part of the fun, friends.
in a medium bowl, combine the corn, avocado, tomatoes, spring onions and bacon. squeeze in lime juice and olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. toss until everything is mixed and well seasoned. this salad is great in a whole wheat tortilla wrap, and i love it for brunch with buttered bread i’ve toasted on the griddle after the corn and scrambled eggs.
what are your favourite hot weather recipes?