It’s been hot. I don’t have to tell you that though. You’re all too well acquainted with that by now. And the kitchen, and more specifically, the kitchen stove, may be the last place you want to be at the moment. But, ah, one still has to eat!
So here’s a very easy, refreshing salad you can make quickly and without breaking (any more of ) a sweat.
Black bean and corn look beautiful together, and all the more so when topped with roughly chopped cilantro. And they taste even better–sweet corn, tender earthy beans, fresh lime dressing. Served cold, but with some heat from a spicy pepper. And not only can you make it ahead, it’s one of those blessed recipes that only gets better the longer it camps out in the fridge. And it’s healthy to boot!
Now, I added a few extra steps by using dried beans and roasted corn. You can simplify this on both counts. For one, canned beans can easily sub in for dried. My sisters ignore me when I tell them to use dry beans so you should feel free to do so as well.
As for the corn, frozen is a good alternative. Right now, corn on the cob is fresh and cheap and just about everywhere. Roasting it in the oven to bring out a little more flavor and sweetness, and for me it’s easier than boiling those ears in a huge pot of water. Of course, as we’ve established above, it’s hot, so you might be wondering why I am willingly turning on the oven. Good point. But if you’re still interested, roast your corn the night before in the relative cool of the evening, and the next day after you get home from work your salad will come together in a flash.
- 3 ears corn (or substitute 1½c frozen)
- 3c black beans, cooked and well-drained (soak and cook 1 cup of dry beans or use 2 cans black beans)
- 2T lime juice (from one large lime)
- 2T rice wine vinegar
- 2T olive oil
- 2 shallots or one small red onion, chopped
- one hot pepper (such as Anaheim, jalapeno or even serrano if you like it hot!), seeds removed, chopped fine
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½c chopped fresh cilantro
- chips for garnish
- If not using frozen corn, roast the corn at 500F for 20 minutes, until the ears are starting to brown in spots. Allow to cool, then cut the kernels from the cob: stand the corn on its base, hold the tip with one hand, then use a large knife to cut the kernels off, using a sawing motion. You’ll get the swing of it quickly.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the lime juice, vinegar, and olive oil. Stir in the corn, beans, onions or shallots, and hot pepper. Adjust for salt and pepper–you may need to add more than you think, especially if you start with dried beans.
- Chill for at least an hour or more to let flavors meld, then top with cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips.