Category Archives: corn

Elote Salad

I will admit, my obsession with corn is getting a little out of control. But what can I say, corn is delicious! A fresh ear of sweet corn in the summer? Doesn’t get any better. Bianca and Gus also really love corn. Like, REALLY love it. So they are happy with this recent obsession.

I’ve had elote on the brain lately, and have been dreaming of making a vegan version of it. I have had this elote recipe flagged for a while now and was building my arsenal to bang this out for dinner one night. The night that I decided to make it, I popped the corn in the oven to roast when I said to myself, “hmm, how can I make this into a main dish?” When alas, I decided to turn this into an elote salad! I had some lettuce and spinach in my garden that I had yet to harvest and some squash left from our last CSA… all of that together with extra of the crumbled tofu topping and we have ourselves a well-balanced winner of a summer dinner. I should note that my meat eating roommate was passing through the kitchen as I was making this… and I told him the tofu was cheese, so he sprinkled some on his sandwich and proclaimed how delicious this “cheese” was.

The dish had a bit of a sweetness to it from the corn, some crazy flavor action from the garlicy squash, a bit of spice from the overkill amount of hot sauce I accidentally poured in, but luckily cooled down by the tofu… and all of this was over some super crispy and fresh lettuce and baby spinach from my garden. Each of these components alone were delicious, but when you put them all together… we are talking something out of this world.

Elote Salad
Materials:
  • 2 ears corn (still in husks)
  • juice from 1 lime
  • 1/2 cup firm tofu, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup cashew cream
  • 1/4 cup nayonnaise (vegan mayo)
  • juice from 1/2 lime
  • olive oil
  • 2 medium size summer squash, sliced into rounds
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • lettuce of choice
  • hot sauce
Methods:
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Place ears of corn in the husks in the oven for 30 minutes.
  3. While the corn is roasting:
    1. Combine the tofu, salt, vinegar, lime juice, and nutritional yeast and set aside.
    2. Heat up a swirl of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat and sauté the garlic and summer squash for about 3 minutes.
  4. Remove the corn from the oven, let cool, remove the kernels from the cob, and sprinkle with juice from 1 lime.
  5. Toss the corn with the cashew cream and nayonnaise.
  6. To assemble the salad: lay down the greens, top with the zucchini, then the corn, then the tofu, and finally top off with a dash of your favorite hot sauce.
  7. Enjoy!

 

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More corn and more salad

Ok, the time has come. I have no flight reservations coming up, no trips, no big school events, etc. And I couldn’t be more excited! I had a few weeks of travel that all culminated with my birthday weekend this past weekend (Happy Birthday to me!). I had an amazing birthday where I felt immensely loved and taken care of, which is the best way to spend your birthday. From a new (zoom) lens from my amazing parents and a family reunion at some old stomping grounds in Michigan to a surprise birthday dinner at Chez Panisse and homemade birthday cakes in Berkeley from my amazing friends… it truly was a treat and I feel very blessed!

But alas, time to get down to business around here, especially as summer produce is flooding our farmers markets and our gardens. When vegetables are grown organically and picked fresh and ripe, they are at their most nutritious. When farmed organically (without the use of pesticides, etc), the plants must rely on their natural defenses to stay alive. This means that they produce more protective compounds, which are then passed on to you when you eat it. Also, when they are at their ripest, it is when the plant is saying, “ok, i’m ready for my seeds to be spread, in return I will give you a nutrient packed treat!” So, I encourage you to take advantage of the produce that is out right now!

Which brings me to this salad. I was in Michigan, which for anyone who has visited there, has lots of corn… and a 100 degree day on the 5th of July was a perfect day for this corn salad that my mom has been waiting to try out. It is the perfect refreshing dish for a summer barbecue. We added some chickpeas to it to make it a filling main dish and served it at a little get together and it was enjoyed by all! I jazzed it up a bit with extra basil and some mint and it was incredibly palate pleasing and a great way to cool down on a hot day. Also, a big shout out to Elaine for providing the adorable star plate and the other props for this dish :-).

Fresh Corn Salad
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens
 
Materials:
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 ears fresh corn, kernels cut off
  • 1 red onion, finely diced
  • 1 cucumber, seeded and finely diced
  • 1 bell pepper (I used orange), finely diced
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
  • 2 cups arugula
Method:
  1. Whisk together the vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper, and set aside to allow the sugar to dissolve while preparing the rest of the salad.
  2. Toss together the fresh corn kernels with the fresh of the finely diced vegetables and dressing.
  3. At serving, gently fold in the arugula.
  4. Enjoy!
    • Preferably with family and friends at a summer BBQ :-).

Not your average salad

Remember my spiel about salads? Right.

Well here is another reminder that salads don’t have to be boring! Or limp. Or soggy. This salad is about as crunchy and zippy as it gets. Lemon juice, vinegar, and jalapeños for brightness, corn and cabbage for crunch, all cooled off by some tomatoes. We have ourselves a winner!

Isn’t cabbage pretty?

Oh, do some of those ingredients look familiar? Ya, I haven’t been to the grocery store… so I am in throwing-together-what-I-have mode. Also because I have been trying my hardest to use everything from one grocery trip before going again to avoid wasting food. Well turns out 1 head of cabbage takes me forever to get rid of, so the cabbage you see popping up in all my recipes all hails from the same head of cabbage. I have begged cabbage-loving R to take it off my hands… but lately I think he has had enough of eating foods that leak red color into him (the same guy who complains that beets taste like dirt has been drinking beet/dirt juice nightly… at least when he isn’t too busy making oatmeal smoothies?? I don’t know about that one…). And the lemon juice you see in the recipe? Oh, just from a lemon that I GREW. NBD. I have a meyer lemon tree as part of my balcony oasis, and said little lemon tree currently has roughly 30 itty bitty teeny weeny little lemons on it!

Expect lot so of lemon recipes this summer…

Anyways, if it means eating this salad every night until the cabbage is done, then I am A-OK with that!

Spicy Cabbage and Corn Salad
Materials:
  • 1/4 head red cabbage, shredded
  • Fresh kernels from 1 ear of corn
  • handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 jalapeño, deseeded and sliced thin
  • Juice from 1 meyer lemon
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 heaping tablespoon fresh chopped mint
  • salt and pepper to taste
Methods:
  1. Toss all of the above ingredients together.
  2. Enjoy!

Man food

Warm weather has been filling the spring air lately, and BBQs are filling my calendar. I was searching for something to bring to a department BBQ, when I stumbled across jalapeño beer cornbread. Could there be anything more perfect for a BeerBBQ?

I’m going to be upfront with you, I cheated a little bit. Trader Joe’s was conveniently on my errand route Sunday morning, so I stopped in there hoping to get the ingredients for the cornbread.  I should have known that TJ’s wouldn’t have cornmeal, though. I grabbed the jalapeños, I grabbed some honey… and then I wandered aimlessly, whilst mustering the energy to add another stop on my way home to get cornmeal and thinking, “well this is inconvenient.”

Then I passed the boxed mixes section. I mean, it wouldn’t hurt to at least look at the box of cornbread mix, right? Ok, so the ingredients listed are basically flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and sugar… so it isn’t so much a box mix as someone just already mixed my dry ingredients together for me. How nice of them?!

So there you have it. I doctored up a Trader Joe’s cornbread mix to make this cornbread.

MOVING ON. What makes this cornbread truly amazing is the doctoring up… the beer and the jalapeños, to be more specific. Seriously, this manly hunk of bread basically left the toilet seat up and then sat on my couch farting. The beer adds a super interesting flavor, while the jalapeños give it a really nice kick that sort of lingers on your lips. Another huge perk? Check out that ingredient list: just about 5 ingredients (most of which I know you have or can easily have), uses a store-bought mix, and has jalapeños in it… you can totally handle that!

Not convinced yet? When I slathered a piece with honey and handed it to rejoicing R, he seriously just stood there smiling at me for a good 5 minutes, sort of dumbfounded by the epiphany that was occurring in his mouth at that moment. He then spent literally the rest of the day talking about this cornbread. Well, at least when he wasn’t suggesting we sneak cinnabons into a movie we were going to see that night… and telling me how he used to pack peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to bring to parties in college.

Anyways, bring this to your next social gathering, and I promise everyone will love you for it!

But aren’t I your honey?!
Jalapeño Beer Cornbread
Inspired by Cosmo Cookie 

Materials:
  • 1 box cornbread mix (Trader Joe’s, preferably)
  • 1 flax egg
  • 1/2 cup beer (I used Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye, my current favorite)
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and finely diced
  • honey (optional, but recommended)
Methods:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8×8 square pan.
  2. Mix together the egg, beer, soy milk, oil, and jalapeños.
  3. Add the cornbread mix and stir just until moistened.
  4. Pour into pan and place in the oven for about 40 minutes.
  5. Drizzle with honey and enjoy!