Cooking On A Budget: Summer Corn and Tomato Salad with Buttermilk Dressing

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Summer Corn and Tomato Salad with Buttermilk Dressing


I have a wonderful friend from Australia who has her own food blog and was inspired to create my own summer corn dish based on a recipe she posted. The garden will yield all the fresh herbs and local corn will be here before we know it. So conceptualizing this in my mind has been fun and the anticipation of making it with herbs from our garden and fresh local corn has me in "can't wait" mode.
Actually you can use any kind of tomato in this dish: grape tomatoes, vine ripe or like I am going to do nice red ripe plum tomatoes. They were on sale for $1.79 per pound and were beautifully red. So instead of the cherry tomatoes, I will use these red plum tomatoes - four of them will work.
The cost for the corn salad came to $4.63. So many portions for a side dish at $.57 per person for eight people, $.46 for ten people.
The flavors of the ripe tomatoes, the sweet corn and the red onion with that bit of basil and the tangy buttermilk dressing is so refreshingly good.

  • 6 ears of butter and sugar corn or silver queen (a variety of white corn)
  • 1 small red onion - fine dice
  • 12 - 14 cherry tomatoes - halved
  • 1 tbsp. fresh basil - minced
  • salt and black pepper - to taste
  • sugar to taste - optional
  • buttermilk dressing (recipe below)
  1. After you shuck the corn and remove the silk cut off the stalk end of the cob so you have a flat end to strip the corn off the cob after it cooks.
  2. In a pot large enough to hold all the cobs of corn, bring salted water up to a boil over high heat. I usually add in a sugar spoon amount of sugar to the water as well. That's optional. Your pot should contain enough water so you do not scorch the corn. Probably a third of the way up the pot up to no more than one half way up.
  3. One the water boils, place the cobs in the water using tongs. Cover and turn the heat down to medium and cook for about 15-16 minutes. You still want a crunch to the corn.
  4. Remove the corn from the pot and place on a platter or cookie sheet to cool down. While the corn is cooling, chop your onion, slice the tomatoes and mince the basil. Then make the dressing.
  5. When the corn is cooled down, take a long sharp knife and remove all of the kernels. Let the chunks that fall remain in chunks.
  6. To a large bowl add the corn, onion, basil and tomatoes. Salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Combine all of this with the buttermilk dressing. Don't over do the dressing. You can always refrigerate the remainder of the dressing in an airtight container.
Buttermilk Dressing:
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tbsp. mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
  • juice of 1 lemon (about 1 tbsp. or so)
  • 1 tsp. white sugar
  • 1 large clove garlic - minced
  1. In a bowl combine and whisk together all of the above ingredients. That's it!
Costing the recipe, I paid $1.89 for the buttermilk but will only use 4 ounces of the 32 ounce container and save the rest for marinating chicken for fried chicken or marinating onion rings for fried onion rings. So the cost about $1.60. Now you can make more than this recipe calls for and save it as a dressing for any kind of salad. It is still not as expensive as a national brand that on SALE is $3.99 per bottle! And if you read the label of ingredients some kind of oil is one of the first ingredients along with water and sugar; buttermilk is like the fifth item. Not for this gal, homemade all the way. Less expensive, better for you - it's the only way to fly.
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