Sunday, May 30, 2010

Black Bean, Corn and Avocado Salad

This salad can be a main dish, side dish for grilled chicken, or topping for lettuce. But I say skip the lettuce and go for the good stuff.

The key to this salad is fresh lime juice and good extra virgin olive oil. If your olive oil comes in a plastic bottle, it is not good olive oil. If you use it in this salad, your salad will taste like plastic and will be no where near as good.

2 large avodcados, diced
2 cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
4 large ears of corn, or 1 small bag of frozen corn
1 red onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1 garlic clove, pressed
juice of 2-3 limes
1/2 bunch of cilantro leaves (chop them off the stems)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt to taste

1- In a large bowl, combine the avocado and black beans. Mix with approx 1 tbsp of lime juice to keep the avocado from browning while you do the rest.

2- Options for corn:
  • Boil the ears in salted water for 7-8 minutes. You want them slighlty cooked but still crispy. NOT mushy. Cut the corn off of the cob, allow to cool to room temp and add to big bowl
  • Brush the ears with olive oil and roast at 450 in oven, or on grill until they are slightly done but not mushy. Cut kernels off the cob, allow to cool to room temp and add to big bowl
  • Open the bag of frozen corn and pour it into a collander. Run the collander under warm (not hot) water until the corn defrosts, but you don't want it to cook. Blot with a paper towel to dry it off a bit, and then add it to the big bowl.
3- Add in the red onion and chili powder

4- For the dressing, use a mortar and pestal or a food processor to pulverize the garlic, cilantro and lime juice. This should look something like the beginnings of a pesto. Drizzle in the olive oil and wither whisk or whir a little bit longer in the food processor to combine it. Now it should really look like pesto, but thinner. Add a little more oil or lime juice to taste.

5- Toss the dressing with the avocado mixture, add salt to taste and chill for at least 30 mintues to let the flavors combine. If you let it sit overnight, it won't be as pretty, but it will taste even more awesome.

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