Thursday, August 1, 2013

Fire-Roasted Corn Salad

Fire-Roasted Corn Salad
(serves 8-10)
This salad is the perfect addition to any summer barbecue, cook-out or picnic. Fire-roasting the corn, peppers, onions and tomatoes brings out their inherent sweetness. Lime juice and cilantro add fresh, bright flavor and warm, savory spices round out this Mexican-inspired dish made with seasonal ingredients.

 -6-7 ears sweet corn (husks removed)
- 1 cup whole grape tomatoes
- 3 large bell peppers quartered (your color choice)
- 1 large red onion (cut into large chunks)
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro (finely chopped)
- Juice of 1 lime
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon olive oil (or oil of your choice)
- ¼ teaspoon salt + more to taste
- Ground black pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika

Preheat the grill – high heat.

Place 3-4 ears of the corn into a large zip top bag. Drizzle about 2 tablespoons (half of ¼ cup) into the bag, add some salt and pepper. 

Close the bag and rub the corn around inside to coat with the oil, salt and pepper. Remove from the bag, transfer to a plate and repeat with the rest of the corn.

Add the quartered bell peppers to the bag along with the tomatoes. Drizzle the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil into the bag, sprinkle with salt and pepper, close the top and gently massage the vegetables to coat with the oil. Transfer the vegetables to a plate.

Rub the large chunks of red onion in the leftover oil inside the bag, adding a little more oil if necessary.

Place the tomatoes on skewers, piercing them through the middle. Do the same with the chunks of red onion.

Reduce the grill heat to medium. The grilling process will take about 15 minutes total. Transfer all of the vegetables to the grill, placing the tomatoes on the top rack. 

Grill the tomatoes until they are slightly blistered and just starting to crack open. This will only take a few minutes. Return them to the plate.

Turn the corn when it has achieved good roasted color on one side; cook until each side has a nice golden-brown color. Remove from the grill, one by one as they are finished roasting.

Grill the peppers until the skin sides are blistered and charred to your liking. Flip the peppers so that the “insides” of the pieces are roasted as well, moving them around to hotter areas of the grill if necessary. Remove the peppers from the grill when they have softened and achieved your desired level of color.


Turn the onions occasionally as they cook, to ensure that each side is evenly roasted. Remove from the grill (carefully grab the skewer in the middle, using the tongs).

Allow the vegetables, particularly the corn, to cool enough to handle. Stand the corn up vertically and slice the kernels off of the cobs.

Transfer the kernels to a large mixing bowl.

Dice the peppers; don’t bother removing the skin, it contains much of the delicious roasted flavor of this dish. Add to the mixing bowl with the corn.

Dice the onions and add to the mixing bowl.

Add the tomatoes, cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika and finely chopped cilantro; squeeze the lime over the top.

Stir the vegetables to coat them evenly with the spices and lime juice. Add more salt and pepper if necessary.

Transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy!

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