With summer weather finally having hit the SF Bay Area--at least for the mean time--I wanted to share a super easy, healthy and delicious cold salad recipe that my kids and I have been gobbling up this week. It feels like a summer food, with the crunchy sweet corn kernels sliced right off the cob and the beautifully red grape tomatoes that are so delectable this time of year. I could eat this every day of the summer!
My recipe has evolved from several others and has been simplified to fit my busy schedule. Try making other additions and changes that you think would be yummy. I think it would be hard to mess us this recipe! What I like about this recipe is that, if some ingredients are left out for the time being, it can keep in the recipe for 5 days or so and tossed together quickly at a moment's notice.
Summer-Time Black Bean and Corn Salad
kernels sliced from 2-3 ears of corn
2 cans of black beans, washed, or equivalent amount (4 cups) of freshly cooked black beans
grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half, about 1 cup, or more if desired
1 ripe avocado, plus a couple more to keep on reserve
1 bunch of cilantro
1 lemon squeezed, and 1-2 lemons more to keep on reserve
sea salt, to taste
Place corn kernels, black beans, and tomatoes in a large bowl and toss. I like to eat this salad for lunch or a snack, so I do not dress all of it at once. If you are eating only a portion of it, then next take desired amount of the corn, bean and tomato mixture and move to another smaller bowl. Depending on how much you are eating at once, add 1/2 to 1 whole avocado diced. Also add chopped cilantro according to taste. If I am making salad to serve myself, my husband and two kids, I add about 1/2 to 3/4 cup chopped cilantro because I love the flavor so much!
Next add lemon juice to taste. If you are serving four people, you can use the juice from 1/2 to 1 lemon, tasting to check your preference. Toss gently, adding sea salt to taste. (You probably will only need a minimal amount of salt.)
I like to have extra lemon juice squeezed into a glass container that I keep in the fridge, along with a small handful of chopped cilantro kept in a separate container. Cilantro doesn't keep as long--maybe one day--before it starts to go bad, so don't prepare too much cilantro ahead of time. If I have the beans, corn, and tomatoes in one storage container and have the lemon juice and cilantro prepped as well, it is really quick to dice an avocado and throw the salad together. When dressed, the salad actually holds up really well until the next day or to pack in a lunch box.
This salad can also be served over a bed of lettuce or some room-temperature cooked brown rice. One night last week, I was preparing a green salad to accompany our dinner, and I threw some of the bean mixture over some romaine lettuce and added some other things, like carrots, avocado and cucumber and it was a nice way to make the salad more interesting and filling.
I hope you enjoy this salad! It is as colorfully beautiful as it is nutritious and delectable!