Corn. It is one of my favorite veggies but it also brings back so many memories of eating it with warm butter dripping down my chin on a hot summer day. “Knee high by the 4th of July” was one of the first sayings that I remember from growing up in South Dakota. There was corn growing all around me. Granted, most of it was for cattle but as a little girl I didn’t know the difference.
My mom always had a huge garden. We, my brother, sister and I, would help weed it on a daily basis and at the end of summer we would help harvest the fruits of my mothers hard labor. My grandma, Luella, would come to the house for a few days and they would can and freeze everything so we could have veggies all winter long. The memories of those days are still as fresh as that garden produce, in my memory.
There are a lot of recipes for corn salads out there and many of them are delightful. I am challenged by the fact that my husband can’t have cilantro. My favorite corn salad recipes contain avocado and of course, cilantro. So I had to punt.
I designed this recipe with the thought of fresh Mediterranean flavors that would accentuate the sweetness and smokiness of corn once it had been grilled.
This is not a recipe that I could ever imagine my grandma Luella making but I think she would have enjoyed it. I imagine her saying to me in her South Dakota accent, “Well Jeri, this isn’t half bad”.
I dedicate this recipe is to my mom, Karen, who instilled my love for all veggies, She make summer veggies sing all year long and loves trying a new veggie salad. Love you mom.
Mediterranean Style Corn Salad
4 ears of fresh corn, shucked. (If fresh corn is not available use frozen and sauce it in a dry pan to get some char on it)
1/2 c dry roasted pistachios chopped (you can sub any kind of nut here)
1 tsp Aleppo pepper (you can sub 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes and 1/2 tsp smoked or regular paprika)
1/2 c chopped mint or basil
1/3 c. white wine or rice vinegar
4 oz crumbled Cotija or Feta cheese
1/3 c. Olive oil
Juice of a whole lemon
Fresh ground pepper an
Brush the corn with olive oil or spray with olive oil spray. Put on the grill 4-5 minutes on each side to get a nice char on it.
Remove from the grill and cool. Once it is cool enough to handle, cut it off of the cob.
In a medium size bowl mix pepper, vinegar, oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add corn, pistachios and cheese. Taste for seasoning. Right before serving add the chopped mint.