This is a magical recipe because it transforms even the saddest frozen corn into something spectacularly delicious. Roasting brings out corn’s natural sweetness and plumps up the kernels so they are tender and juicy. It’s a flexible dish too in that you can vary the vegetables based upon what’s on hand. Serve it as-is, or on a bed of greens, at room temperature or chilled.
For the salad:
- 3 cups (750 mL) frozen corn kernels
- 1 medium onion, peeled and diced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons (22 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) each sea salt and black pepper
- 1 cup (250 mL) chopped tomatoes or red pepper
- 1 cup (250 mL) diced cucumber or zucchini
- 1 medium avocado
- Fresh chopped herbs, to garnish (optional)
For the dressing:
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) rice or cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons (45 mL) olive, canola or avocado oil
- 2 teaspoons (10 mL) maple syrup or honey or agave syrup (or more, to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) each sea salt and smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon each (1.25 mL) chili pepper and garlic powder
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a medium sized baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a bowl, combine frozen corn and diced onion. Don’t worry if your corn is covered in ice crystals – they will evaporate during cooking. Drizzle olive oil over top and stir to coat evenly.
- Transfer the corn and onions to a baking tray and spread out in a single layer. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Put the tray in the preheated oven and cook for 25 minutes, stirring once or twice, until corn is tender and onions are just beginning to char on the edges.
- Transfer the cooked corn and onions to a serving bowl and let cool to room temperature before proceeding (you can speed this up by placing the bowl in the refrigerator for 10 minutes).
- While the corn and onions cool, make the dressing by shaking all the ingredients together in a small jar with a tight lid. Taste and adjust seasonings to suit your tastes.
- Once the corn has cooled slightly, add the chopped fresh vegetables (except avocado) to the corn and onions and toss gently. Salad can be prepared to this point and covered; store at room temperature for up to 2 hours or in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.
- Just before serving, pit and dice the avocado and add to the other vegetables.
- Drizzle the salad dressing over the vegetables and toss gently. Garnish with chopped herbs, if using. Serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings.