All of us at the East Nashville Farmers Market agree that summer sweet corn and juicy, ripe tomatoes are best when left in their most natural state— stark-naked. Our farmers grow the sweetest corn and bring it fresh from the field to our market, and a naked sweet corn and tomato salad really showcases the flavors that are available only once a year. Therefore, forgo those sugary dressings, we say! And let the pure flavor of corn and tomatoes shine through.
Corn and tomatoes are like summertime soul mates at the East Nashville Farmers Market, and we feel whoever first discovered their combination deserves one big pat on the back. The sugary sweetness of fresh summer corn pairs with the tangy acidic bite of farm-grown tomatoes that produces a natural “vinaigrette” all on its own. To round-out the sweet-and-sour profile, we like to add slightly bitter, peppery basil and a good sprinkling of salt—finito! You have a healthy snack or a quick salad that not only satisfies taste buds, but also fortifies your body with valuable nutrition. Refreshing, light, and candy-sweet—perfect for the family during hot summer months.
For a quick, single serving of Stark-Naked Sweet Corn and Tomato Salad, I take one large ear of bi-colored corn from Oak Grove Farms and toss it in my microwave, husk and all, for three minutes (to learn more about why we love microwaving sweet corn, check out our blog). After my corn is finished, I let it rest for another three minutes to steam and until the husk is cool enough to handle. I remove the husk and silks, and cut the kernels off the cob into a medium sized bowl.
Next, I slice a handful of assorted cherry tomatoes in half, or even dice a medium slicer, and toss on top of my lightly-steamed corn. I finely-chop 3 large leaves of basil and sprinkle them in to add a bright, peppery flavor. Finally, I finish my salad with a good sprinkle of salt and a dash of paprika for color. Toss and voila! —the quickest and lightest summer snack that makes me grateful for summertime’s bounty every year. (Sidenote: This salad can also be refrigerated and enjoyed chilled.)
In closing, of course one could squeeze a little lemon juice, splash an herbed vinegar, or drizzle extra-virgin olive oil on this salad, but why would one? Try this summertime combination naked and see what you think… you might find that you’re a stark-naked salad fan after all.
Stark Naked Sweet Corn and Tomato Salad
1 ear Oak Grove Farms Sweet Corn
5-8 assorted cherry tomatoes
2-4 large basil leaves, finely-diced (approx. 2 tablespoons)