Friday, August 1, 2014

Recipe from the Garden: Tomato Salad with Corn-Tarragon Vinaigrette

Tonight’s dinner consisted of Hunter’s corn on the cob, a baked potato, and this yummy Tomato Salad with Corn-Tarragon Vinaigrette – a recipe I had gotten from my mom (she got it from the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper). Some garden ingredients include tarragon, arugula, and tomatoes. I used my Sunchocola cherry-sized tomatoes.

Tomato Salad with Corn-Tarragon Vinaigrette

For the Vinaigrette:
1 ear fresh corn, shucked
3 T. Champagne vinegar
1/8 c. minced red onion
1 T. minced fresh tarragon
1 t. honey or to taste
3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt & cracked pepper

For the Salad:
3-4 lbs. tomatoes, mixed colors, types (grape, cherry, heirloom), whole if small, sliced if large
12-16 oz. arugula, rinsed and drained
Cubed fresh mozzarella and/or avocado (optional) (I used mozzarella balls)
Fresh basil leaves (this is my mom’s addition)

1. For the vinaigrette: Cut a thin slice from the thick end of the cob for a flat base. Stand the cob on that end in a shallow bowl. With a sharp knife, cut corn off the cob. Reserve.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, onion, tarragon, honey, salt and pepper to taste. Blend well. Stir in the reserved corn. Adjust seasoning, adding extra honey, if desired. If not using at once, cover and refrigerate. Whisk or shake the dressing vigorously just before serving.

3. For the salad: In a large, shallow bowl, combing the tomatoes, arugula, and mozzarella and/or avocado. Toss gently and dress with the vinaigrette.

(My notes: I don’t like soggy salads, so I add the dressing at the last minute and don’t use a ton of it. Also, I cut the avocado at the last minute so it stays fresh.)

This salad is what turned me onto arugula and basil together. I absolutely LOVE that combination of flavors. I also love the sweet, fresh, un-cooked corn in this recipe. I had never eaten raw corn before and it turns out it is a great salad ingredient. The dressing is mild, but tasty, and lets the flavor of the other fresh ingredients stand out.

I make this meal, or a similar one, for myself and Brian about once a week or once every other week in the summer. Sometimes instead of the salad with greens we do a caprese salad.

P.S. In case you haven’t noticed, I love cheese. I think cheese shows up in just about every recipe that I have put on here. I am a cheese freak, a cheese-aholic, life just wouldn’t be worth living without cheese. It’s a wonder I don’t have a cheese blog. But Madame Fromage already does a fabulous job of that.

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