It’s August in Vermont, and prime time for sweet corn and cucumbers. Put them together and you get the most delicious chunky, sweet and colorful summer salad. Here’s my recipe, seasoned with fresh cilantro and a little maple syrup. If the grill is hot, cook the corn on the cob over the hot coals rather than steaming it, for more flavor.
The maple-balsamic vinaigrette will quickly become a staple, delicious on a variety of year-round salad greens, or on its own, and if you have smoked maple syrup, that’s even better. It will give it a light smoky quality, as if there was a hint of bacon, but it’s totally vegetarian. Make ahead, and have it ready for later – or pack it into a container for a lovely summer picnic.
Cucumber, Corn and Tomato Summer Salad
Serves 4 to 6
4 large ears fresh corn, husked
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 large cucumber, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 small red onion, thinly sliced into half-moons (about 1/2 cup)
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup Maple-Balsamic Vinaigrette, plus more as desired (recipe follows)
Fill a large stockpot with 1 inch of water and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Place the corn in the pot in neat layers. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook until the corn is tender, about 5 minutes. Drain in a colander and let cool enough to touch. Cut each ear in half and stand on one end to cut off the kernels. You should have about 3 cups kernels.
In a medium salad bowl, combine the corn kernels, tomatoes, cucumber, onion, parsley, and cilantro. Add the lemon juice and toss. Add the Maple Vinaigrette and toss to coat, then add more, if you like. Season with salt and pepper. Serve, or cover and refrigerate to serve later.
Makes 1/2 cup
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 large clove garlic,
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup ( substitute with 1 teaspoon smoked maple syrup)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
In a small bowl, combine the mustard, garlic, maple syrup, lemon juice, vinegar, and basil. Slowly stream in the olive oil while whisking to emulsify. Season with the salt and pepper.