Saturday, July 18, 2009
Smoked Corn Salad
I've been obsessed with smoked sea salt. Mostly, I sprinkle it over potatoes before roasting them, but lately I've become a bit more adventurous, less fearful of wasting my precious salt stash. Everything I try seems to taste a bit better, more exotic. I do love the depth grilling adds to food, and smoked sea salt is like a flavorful cousin or step-sibling to that.
This salad is a great way to use leftover grilled corn, as well as a good excuse to grill corn in the first place. The combination of grilled corn with the sea salt and fresh herbs gives this simple salad a complicated flavor. Lovely on its own, this would also be yummy on top of nachos or left to marinate for several hours (sans cheese) and used as a creative pico de gallo. You decide.
Smoked Corn Salad
Makes about 4 cups
1 tsp honey
2 T lime juice, fresh if possible
1/4 cup EVOO
1/2 tsp coarse smoked sea salt* (or use kosher salt and it'll taste just fine)
4 ears of grilled corn, kernels cut off
1 medium ripe tomato or several cherry tomatoes, diced
1/2 jalapeno, finely diced
1/2 small white onion, finely diced
1/2 cup diced jicama*
8 big basil leaves, chopped
small handful cilantro leaves, chopped
small handful chives, chopped
1/4 cup queso fresco, crumbled*
In a small jar with a lid, combine the dressing ingredients by shaking together. Set aside.
Chop and combine all of the salad ingredients except the cheese. Pour the dressing over, stir and then let sit for at least 15 minutes to combine the flavors. Taste, and add more salt (or olive oil if it seems dry). Just before serving, add the crumbled cheese and stir again.
*If you can't find smoked sea salt, it's no big deal to use regular salt instead. The jicama adds crunch to this salad, but diced cucumber or pepper also works well as a substitute. Queso fresco tastes a bit like a really mild feta, so you're welcome to use that instead. If using feta, crumble it super small and add 2 tablespoons instead of the full 1/4 cup.