Summer in these parts, has started off with a bang. Perhaps a better word would be blast. Or make that wave as is HEATWAVE. When the thermometer hovers well above 90 every day with humidity dripping from the air, frankly I can't be bothered to fuss with complicated cooking. We have been much too occupied with trips to the pool, sprinkler afternoons, slurping down icy cold watermelon, whatever we can do to stave off the heat and enjoy the freedom of summertime.
The other reason for cooking hibernation is the fact that there are three different farm stands less then 10 minutes from my house. This time of year, they are packed with seasonal, local produce that begs to be taken home. Food this fresh doesn't need much to make it shine. A little seasoning, the barest amount of cooking, and dinner is done.
Green Bean, Corn and Tomato Salad
1 lb fresh green beans, topped and tailed
2 cups grape tomatoes
2 ears of corn
1 large garlic clove
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Basil or other herb (optional)
Once beans are cleaned, break them into large pieces. Drop them into a pot of salted, boiling water and cook for 4-5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove from water and lay out to cool, or plunge in ice water to speed up the process. Bring water back to a boil and add the two ears of corn. Boil for 5-6 minutes or until barely cooked. Remove from water and slice kernels off the ear of corn. Slice grape tomatoes in half.
Place minced garlic in a bowl with vinegar, salt and pepper. Wisk in olive oil. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Toss with beans, corn and tomatoes. Finely chop basil. Add and toss to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
- Add strips of grilled chicken for a main dish salad
- Serve over a bed of lettuce
- Omit corn and add crumbles of feta cheese and some bell peppers