Nectarine And Summer Corn Caprese Salad

Have you ever felt like you're sharing a brain with someone else? I know people are always laughing about their best friend or boyfriend or mom or somebody like, "Oh yeah, we share the same brain." But when it starts happening with strangers, that just feels weird. Currently it feels like the staff of Food52 have been tapping my brain (while I sleep, maybe?) and viewing my ideas and/or accomplishments. And then before I have a chance to edit my photos and post my project, they go and create their own version. Posting mine afterward is like racing several of your friends to google a question and you have Internet Explorer and they've got Chrome and by the time your page loads, they're already halfway through a BuzzFeed quiz. I'm never going to be a vegetarian or anything close to one, but in the summertime I love to create dishes where the fresh produce gets to take center stage. There's just something perfect about the pairing of nectarines with grilled summer corn. We were lucky enough to get a call the day before I made this salad to come pick up eight dozen ears of non-GMO corn from a local farmer's field. I quickly scrapped my store-bought corn and grilled a few ears of the real stuff. To grill corn, keep the husk on and grill over high heat. When thoroughly cooked, peel back the husk and char the surface of the corn just a little bit. It adds such dimension to an ordinary corn-cob. Sweet cherry tomatoes from the farm-stand up the road, rosemary from my tenacious little half-forgotten garden, and creamy slices of fresh mozzerella round out this salad. I served it over cold quinoa for some added protein. Quinoa is a my absolute favorite grain right now and although you don't have to include it in this salad (I haven't officially called for it in the recipe) but I think that it elevates this salad from a side to a main course without a bit of additional effort. My favorite way to cook quinoa is letting it freely boil in a large pot of salted water with a bay leaf or two. When the grains have split and begin to look like "bird toenails" as we always say, your quinoa can be drained and used however you'd like. So grab some nectarines, some summer corn, and a handful of cherry tomatoes and get on making this salad! It is a beautiful, simple, filling meal for those nights when it's too hot to bother with really cooking. Maybe I'm slightly overstating things when I call this a caprese salad. It has the mozzarella and tomatoes of a classic caprese but instead of basil, I've used rosemary. I love the way rosemary and lime harmonize when combined and I couldn't resist throwing them into this salad along with the more traditional flavors. Plus my basil died. know. We modify. All the same, I'm happy for the fact that my basil died since it led me to this happy combination of flavors!

Nectarine And Summer Corn Caprese Salad
Serves 4

2 nectarines, thinly sliced
3 ears of summer corn, grilled with kernels sliced off
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 sprigs rosemary, chopped
4 ounces of fresh mozzarella sliced into rounds
2 cups cooked quinoa (if desired)
juice of two limes
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon vinegar
salt & pepper
1.) In a large bowl, combine the nectarines, corn, cherry tomatoes, and rosemary.
2.) In a small bowl combine lime juice, olive oil, vinegar, and salt and pepper.
3.) Arrange slices of mozzarella on a plate and add quinoa, if desired. Toss salad with half the dressing, then top cheese and grains. Drizzle remaining dressing over finished plates for additional flavor and moisture.

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