Now that the warmer weather is here I’m starting to think about what to make for patio and picnic time. This salad is super tasty, and really healthy too. For me it’s a great quick meal salad, and since it keeps in the fridge for a few days I can just dig in whenever I need a little something to eat. You can also mix and match at you see fit, for example if you don’t like peppers you can substitute a bit of jicama or apple or whatever you’d like.
If you use canned beans and corn, all you have to do is make the dressing and add in whatever veg and herbs you like – super easy! Then let it all sit for about half an hour before you dig in.
I found the recipe here, and I just downsized the amounts. I used canned corn instead of frozen because I find frozen corn a bit rubbery, and peaches and cream corn is the best. I also added some freshly chopped tomato to the top of each salad, and a bit of extra bell pepper.
Avocado makes a great addition to the top of each salad serving. Sadly, I could not find a ripe avocado in the five stores I checked. They could charge double for the ripe ones… I’d pay double for a perfectly ripe avocado – would you?
What you need for the salad:
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- I can peaches and cream corn, along with the liquid
- 1 small jalapeño pepper, de-seeded and diced (amount dependent on your heat preferences)
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion
What you need for the dressing:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon honey
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- a pinch of cayenne pepper
What you do:
- Mix up all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
- In a larger bowl, combine all the salad ingredients. Stir the dressing into the salad.
- Let the salad sit in the fridge with a cover over it for half an hour, or a few hours.
Here’s a really simple salad I’ve made a few times this summer, using tomatoes from my garden and cucumbers from a friend’s garden (and corn from the produce store). I just used my favourite homemade vinaigrette, super easy and delicious.
If I use tomatoes and cucumbers out of season I always choose the little ones – cherry tomatoes and those small cucumbers. They have way more flavour. And for winter corn I prefer canned over frozen, and I usually us Peaches and Cream. Still, the summer ones are the best, so I make this a lot while these things are growing nearby and in season.
What you need:
corn on the cob
a few green olives
about 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
about 1/4 teaspoon sugar
white wine vinegar
What you do:
1. Boil a pot of water for the corn and let it cook for a couple of minutes. Remove the corn and run it under cold water.
2. To make the dressing, put the mustard in a bowl and add the sugar and some salt and pepper. Add a little vinegar and mix it into the mustard so there are no lumps. Mix in a bit more vinegar, then drizzle in some olive oil while mixing with a fork. After you’ve added a bit, have a taste and see what you need to add more of.
3. Cut the cucumber and tomatoes into bite-sized pieces. Chop the onion and olives. Cut the corn off the cob, and put all the vegetables together in a bowl. Toss it with some dressing and serve it up.
I was lucky enough to be given some home-grown cucumbers, and then I went and picked these tomatoes and some basil from my garden. If you don’t have access to garden-fresh produce you can visit your local farmer’s market, or just try to find some that look tasty in the produce store. I like cherry tomatoes and the smaller cucumbers because they and often the tastiest option from the produce store.
I don’t use measuring tools to make my salad dressing, so the ingredients are ‘a little of this, a little of that’ and then you can taste your own way to a yummy dressing.
What you need:
part of a sweet onion
a few sprigs of fresh basil
a little sugar
salt and freshly ground pepper
apple cider vinegar
What you do:
1. Cut the tomatoes and cucumbers into bite-sized pieces. Cut a bit of onion into smaller pieces. Put them all into a bowl.
2. To make the dressing, put a small spoonful of dijon into a bowl or cup. Add a few pinches of sugar and a little salt and pepper. Combine these, then pour in a touch of vinegar and mix it up. Add a few tablespoons more vinegar and mix it, then slowly add some olive oil. When you’ve mixed in a few tablespoons of olive oil, have a taste and see if you need more oil or anything else. It shouldn’t taste too acidic, but you also don’t want it to be too oily.
3. Pour some salad dressing over the veggies and toss them until everything is coated. Chop up a few leaves of basil and garnish the salad with them.