Saturday, August 11, 2012
At this time of year, I'm wont to put corn in anything I can feasibly jam it. An ear of fresh local corn is a treat in and of itself. Boiled up with a bit of butter and a lot of salt and pepper there is hardly a more worthy summer side dish that I could choose. I love fresh corn kernels added to pretty much anything, bringing in a bright little burst of sweetness and a bit of texture. What I love about corn is it actually tastes bright, just like it looks- it tastes yellow. And yellow is so fun!
I saw a similar salad made with Israeli cous cous at a Mediterranean sandwich place I like to go to every now and then (if you have a hard time finding farro, feel free to substitute that). Corn, mushrooms, chives: that was it. It sounded so appealing in its simplicity but a little inspired in its choice of ingredients. This is a delightful side dish and I just can’t wait to make up another batch. I wish I had time to do so today.
FARRO SALAD with FRESH CORN,
ROASTED MUSHROOMS and CHIVES
2-3 cups farro, cooked according to package instructions
2 ears fresh corn
½ lb. cremini mushrooms, cleaned and diced
1 bunch chives, minced
Juice from one lemon
Red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
Salt and fresh cracked pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook farro in boiling salted water, according to package instructions (about 20-25 minutes). While the farro is cooking, clean and stem your mushrooms and cut into equal sized chunks. Toss on a baking sheet with a splash of vinegar and a drizzle of oil, salt and pepper. Set to roast in the oven for about 20-25 minutes.
Peel, shuck and cook corn however you choose. You can toss the cobs on the grill, quickly char them over an open flame or do what I did: toss them into the boiling farro water for 7 minutes and then pluck them out. Once the corn is cool, cut the kernels from the cobs and set into a medium sized bowl. When the mushrooms are ready, pull them out and spoon them into the bowl, adding a splash of their accumulated cooking liquid.
Remove farro from heat, drain and rinse with cold water. Add to your bowl the farro, chives and ½ the lemon juice. Toss together well, add a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more lemon juice if it seems dry. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
This salad would make an excellent side dish for sandwiches or a healthy accompaniment to grilled chicken or fish. I also love to toss a few spoonfuls on a simple mixed green salad to bulk it up a bit.