Fresh and crunchy raw corn is a beautiful canvas for summer salads.
Here, kernels just cut from the cob are mixed with bright pickled red onions, hot jalapeños, herbaceous cilantro, and salty cotija in a crazy mix of spicy sweet salty goodness. Once you’ve enjoyed corn this way, use this recipe as a template—add tomatoes or red peppers, toss in some avocado. Or use a shallot or garlic vinaigrette and add tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella instead of chiles, cilantro, and cotija.
For the pickled onions
- 1 small red onion
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
For the salad
- 4 ears sweet corn
- 2 jalapenos
- ½ cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
- 4 ounces cotija
- Peel the onion, cut it in half lengthwise, and cut into very thin slices. Put the slices in a bowl, cover with the lime juice and apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle in the sugar and salt. Stir and toss to dissolve the sugar and salt and set aside.
- Shuck the corn. Use a sharp knife to cut off the kernels (pro tip: set the tip fo the cob in a big bowl and cut down so the kernels drop into the bowl).
- Remove the stems from the jalapenos, cut them in half lengthwise, remove and discard the seeds, cut them crosswise into very thin slices.
- Toss the corn, onions with their pickling liquid, and chiles together—the pickling liquid acts as the dressing.
- Chop the cilantro and toss it into the mix.
- Crumble the cotija over the top and serve.