This is a lovely salad: Sweet, light, satisfying, and silly easy to make (you can trust me on this because I once made a version of this three days in a row for the restaurant at my culinary school!).
Best of all, it is the sort of salad people who don't like salads tend to love (as in husbands and kids!). So it's a good one to have in your repertoire.
And, using frozen corn (organic frozen vegetables are a lifesaver during winter, aren't they?), it takes less than five minutes to make.
Which, if you can lock the kitchen door, gives you a free half an hour to enjoy in blessed solitude!
This time of year, odds are (unless you are reading me in Australia, and, yes, I do have readers in Australia, howdy!), you are not going to get your hands on fresh corn. Or any fresh vegetables outside of root vegetables. So, what I recommend you do is use the best organic frozen corn you can find. Then, come summer use the version, below, when you can get your hands on fresh corn. And really good heirloom tomatoes (I keep trying to eat locally, but in the winter it is such a challenge, isn't it? Especially when trying to get the family to eat a variety of vegetables. Sigh. I'm trying.)
Recipe for corn salad
8 ears of fresh corn (or frozen if that is all you can get)
Generous handful of washed and dried (roll in a paper towel) whole parsley leaves
Generous handful of basil leaves (wash, dry, and roll) – rip the large leaves in half
1 pint of cherry or grape tomatoes, cleaned and dried and cut in half
2 limes, juiced
Salt and pepper
If you are using fresh corn, grill it (if not, then jump to the next paragraph). Then, holding each ear of corn on it’s end, cut the kernels from the cob by cutting downward. I find if I angle my knife ever so slightly toward the cob (as opposed to straight up and down), I waste the least amount of corn.
Mix your corn with your parsley, basil, and tomatoes (Why do I insist they are dry? So your vinaigrette will cling to them. What vinaigrette? I am so glad you asked … ).
In a separate bowl, combine your lime juice with your olive oil, sticking loosely to this ratio: 1 part lime juice to 2 parts oil. Whisk your juice and oil to create your emulsion (You’ll see it happen: The two liquids will become one and your vinaigrette, because that is what you are making here, will change color. It’s a neat process.)
Pour your vinaigrette over your corn salad and combine, using a rubber spatula (or whatever utensil you prefer, just as long as it doesn’t crush your delicate corn).
Taste. Add salt and pepper. Taste again. Keep adding salt and pepper until you can just about taste them; that should be the right amount. And, if your salad needs brightening (if it is good, but not spectacular), feel free to add another good squeeze of lime juice. I did. But it depends on the flavor of your vegetables.
Spend a good twenty minutes flipping through some juicy cookbook, then bring your salad out and be sure to let everyone know how it took so much time and how you are clearly far too exhausted from the effort to, say, do any dishes.
You can thank me later.