Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Corn salsa. (Salad?)


Is this technically a salsa? I looked up salsa and it just means sauce, I guess. I don't really think of this as being a sauce, though. It's like a... dip? Salad? I guess it's a salad.

This is a super easy (like, think Rachael Ray easy. No, think "Semi-homemade with Sandra Lee" easy. Eughdughhhh.) side dish that I like to throw onto a taco plate when the mood strikes me. I usually think it's kind of silly to post about recipes that call for prepackaged foods, but it's not like we're making kraft mac n' cheese or anything- this is really tasty.

You need:
1 or 2 good sized poblano peppers
a can of black beans
a bag of Trader Joe's Fire roasted corn.
A couple of avocados
A red onion
Handful of cilantro
Uh... salt & pepper? That's it.


First thing's first, turn your oven on to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, and trim and oil your peppers. Stick them in the oven for a few minutes until the skin puckers up and you get a few nice charred spots. Put them aside to cool while you finish prepping the rest of your stuff. Rinse and drain your black beans and throw them in a nice big bowl. Add about half the bag of fire roasted corn (get the fire roasted stuff if you can, it's AMAZING considering it comes out of a bag). You can thaw it beforehand or just let it thaw in the bowl, it doesn't retain that much water, so it's not going to make it soggy.

Now, dice your onion! I know I'm not the first person to post an onion-chopping how-to, but why the hell not, right? Recently I came across an onion chopping tutorial (hi, I'm a dork) that made a light bulb go off in my head. I'm insanely lucky to be married to a dreamy culinary school graduate, and I picked up most of my knife work over the last few years from him. He showed me how to butt my knuckles up against the blade so I won't cut myself, and he showed me how he likes to cut an onion.


It's pretty simple. After trimming the root and stem ends, cut the whole onion in half vertically (slicing across the ends you already cut, not through the fat middle part) and then run over to the sink and rinse the whole thing with cold water. The water bonds to the gasses that cause your eyes to water, and it helps keep you from crying. I also breathe through my mouth and not my nose while I'm cutting onions, that helps too- but nothing helps like rinsing.

After you have your halves, use the lines on the onion as a guide for slicing. don't slice all the way through, though. You want it to all be one piece so you can hold onto it later.

Here's the part that made me smack my head and go DUHHHH- the horizontal slice! Once again, not slicing all the way through, do a quick horizontal slice across where you already cut. If your onion is big, do 2 of them.


Then, just chop off the ends and they will be perfect little squares of onion!


When you get to the bit that was holding the whole thing together, it should be thin enough that a few quick chops will take it down to diced size easily.


That's pretty much it. Peel and chop your roasted poblanos and then mix everything together in a big bowl. If you're having a party, you can just put this out with a bag of chips and people will go apeshit. It owns the hell out of regular salsa and it literally takes a few minutes to make- even less time if you buy roasted peppers at the store. (But where can you buy roasted poblanos? They have an amazing flavor that other peppers can't match!) Tonight I served it on a big plate of taco fixins, and instead of mixing the avocado in, I just dropped it on top- I didn't want to have leftovers with mushy avocado in it. I'll just add more when I eat some more tomorrow.



mel-blog said...

Eggsellent. Though I'd be tempted to chuck in some mango & bird's eye chilli to go with it as well.

annamosscity said...

thats looks really good, but i dont live anywhere near a trader joe's... what type of corn is that?

Alicia Carrier said...

oh man, annamosscity, i am sorry you don't live near trader joe's! it is like the staple of my kitchen!

i think most people are jumping on the 'fire roasted' bandwagon nowadays. you can buy all kinds of goofy 'fire roasted' stuff, like canned tomatoes, chilies, etc.- so you shouldn't have any trouble finding frozen 'fire roasted' corn at your local supermarket. if you can't, it's not a big deal. it just has a really amazing smoky flavor that pulls the whole dish together and makes it all really tasty.

leya said...

this looks so good. exactly the kind of thing I've been in the mood for lately. thanks.

amy t sharp of doobleh-vay said...

yumm- loving it!

Cecilia said...

Nice work! I'll have to try out this recipe the next time my friends and I get together for Mexican food night.

Thanks for the onion chopping tutorial. I had never heard of the rinsing trick, so my tear glands are forever grateful.

Karlin said...

I think I'm going to make this tomorrow for a potluck I'm going to! The only part I missed is what exactly happens with the lime and lemon. Do you just squeeze a bit of the juices into the mix?

Alicia Carrier said...

Karlin- yeah, just add a little bit of juice.

Poppstarr said...

Apeshit is an understatement. This is an amazing recipe! It was super easy to make and delicious! I couldn't find any poblano peppers, so I added some salsa and tabasco sauce to add some fire. It needed the pepper, but I couldn't find it (went to 3 stores!) Thank you for this recipe!

foodnerd said...

OOooooh! Sounds purrrrrrfect! I'm drooling and commenting a year later. Since I like your blog so much I decided to read it from the start like a good book. Handy to have a laptop for that.

I love this combination of ingredients! I'm in frenchie Canada and I'm not aware of any Trader Joe's or similar products. So when in need I quickly pan roast the corn in my cast iron skillet and throw in a pinch of smoky sea salt mixed with french grey salt. Totally convincing!! I know I know, salt is bad but what can I say, I LOVE it! I bet this recipe would be great with fish too (like tilapia filets quickly fried in the pan). Terribly jealous of you being married to a man who knows how to cook and that is skilled with the knife! I thought he was cute but now you just raised his cuteness factor to hOt! ; )

Oh that reminds me, I introduced someone to your blog on facebook and 30 minutes later I got this comment: "...holy shit i think i have a girlcrush on that bread and honey girl!" Keep it up! : ))