I realize posting about black bean and corn salad may seem lame, what with fall just around the corner and sweater weather creeping in like Zeus during a nap – smacking you in the face with its bull-like head. But y’all, it’s always a good time of year for Sautéed Corn and Black Bean Salad. Always.
Especially when you’re about the get on a plane and head to Philadelphia for four days with two girls and all the cheesesteak sandwiches you can handle. Because even when husbands support your girl’s trip, they get sad when they’re left watching the house and the fur baby and going to Sunday basketball all by their lonesome.
Which is why last night I made an extra-large batch of green chili enchiladas and tub of black bean and corn salad. If left to his own devices, Garrett might (definitely would) just eat hamburgers and cereal the whole weekend.
But, today has been several months in the making. And I’m thrilled we (Alice, Kat and I) are headed to what I’ve heard is one of the best food cities in America. However, the real reason we’re going to Philadelphia isn’t cheesesteak and donuts. It’s running.
Alice is running her first half marathon. Girl is a rock star. I’m so impressed and inspired by her dedication and work ethic. I’m not inspired enough to try and run one myself. (Let’s not get too crazy now. These old ankles couldn’t even if they wanted to.)
But watching her train, constantly pushing for better times, has been astounding. It’s almost as impressive as her newfound appetite. The girl is eating like a teenage boy. (YEAH BUDDY!!) Which means we can eat all the things in Philly, because she’ll be able to finish whatever Kat and I can’t.
I’ll be sharing Philly updates on Insta stories and a big roundup here. But until then, make this black bean and corn salad. You won’t be disappointed.
Quick Recipe Notes
A few years back Cooks Illustrated did an entire article about the beauty of sautéing corn. Let me tell you, it’s amazing. It adds a nutty depth that you just don’t get when you grill or boil corn. And in a pinch, it can even take a can of corn from blah to glorious. Really though, why you would use canned corn when you can use frozen corn is beyond me. But I digress.
The trick to good sautéed corn is to leave it alone until you hear it pop. If you stir it, it’ll steam instead of brown. You want it to brown. This is when you get that nutty flavor, while still letting it maintain a crisp texture.
How to Cut Corn off the Cob Without Making a Mess
If you’re using fresh corn, place a small bowl or cup upside down in a large bowl. Rest the corn on the bottom of the small cup and then cut the kernels from the cob with a sharp knife. This will keep the kernels from flying everywhere, while raising the cob high enough off the bottom of the big bowl to give you easy access.
Sautéed Corn and Black Bean Salad
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
Serves 4 – 6
2 TBS vegetable oil
3 ears corn, kernels cut from cobs (3 cups)
1 red onion, chopped fine
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 jalapeño chili, stemmed, seeded, and minced (add more for more heat)
1 poblano pepper, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 garlic clove, minced
½ tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp sugar (or honey)
4 TBS red wine vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
Heat vegetable oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add corn. Cook, without stirring, until corn is browned on bottom and begins to pop (about 3 minutes). Stir and cook 1 – 2 more minutes without stirring. Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool completely.
Once corn is cool, add onion, peppers, black beans, and cilantro to bowl.
In a small jar, combine garlic, cumin, chili powder, sugar, vinegar, olive oil and salt and pepper. Stir to combine thoroughly.
Gradually pour dressing over ingredients, stirring to evenly coat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.