Mexican Salad

I started a supper club with some of my close friends a few months back. Us girls used to teach elementary school together. We’ve all gone our separate ways but still have so much fun together. It’s nice to get together once a month and catch up. Our husbands even hit it off. How perfect!

Each month there is a theme set by the host. They are in charge of making a main coarse.  Not only does the food fit the theme, but our outfits do too! It’s a good thing our husbands get along; otherwise they wouldn’t agree to dress up for some of these themes! The other couples are responsible for a side, a dessert, and a drink. So this month we were in charge of the side. The theme was Snowed In and the main coarse was white chicken chile with corn bread. My challenge was making a side that went along with the main coarse. Chile’s one of those meals that can stand alone. So I thought a nice fresh salad to highlight the flavors in the chile would do the trick!

I used a bowl that’s pretty flat because all of the toppings are layered in strips over the lettuce. The best part of this salad is the presentation. Simple ingredients are transformed into a thing of beauty. I started by making my own corn and black bean relish. It couldn’t be easier. You add corn, black beans, red onion, salt, pepper, olive oil, and lime juice into a bowl and mix it up. You’ll have left overs, which is a good thing. You can put it on chips, in quesadillas, even in eggs!

The dressing I made can really be used on any salad, but it’s perfect with this one. The cider vinegar makes it crisp, while the chile in adobo gives it a smoky and spicy kick. You can add more or less chile depending on your taste. Put all the ingredients in a jar and shake it up. 

As for the salad, layer the toppings in three sections: avocado, tomatoes, and corn & black bean relish. I top with some chopped parsley. The colors are incredible. Taking the time to prepare your food makes it so much more fun to eat. After all, we do eat with our eyes first!

Chile Dressing

3 tbsp cider vinegar

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

3 tbsp chopped parsley

1 clove garlic, minced

½ chipotle chile in adobo, minced

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

Combine all ingredients in a jar and shake until well combined.

Corn and Black Bean Relish

11 oz frozen corn, thawed

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

½ red onion, diced

2 tbsp lime juice

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

salt

pepper

Thaw frozen corn and drain excess water. Dice the red onion. In a bowl combine all ingredients and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Mexican Salad

Serves 8

1 head iceberg lettuce

2 avocados

1 cup corn and black bean relish

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

3 scallions

lime wedges for garnish

Rinse and dry iceberg lettuce. Dice lettuce into small chunks. Layer lettuce in the bottom of a large bowl or serving dish. The toppings will cover the lettuce in three sections. Halve the avocados and remove pits. Score the avocado, just to the skin, into bite-sized pieces with a knife. Then, using a spoon, scoop avocado pieces out onto the first section of the lettuce. Halve cherry tomatoes and dice scallions. Combine the two in a separate bowl. Pour mixture down the center of the lettuce. Finally, spoon the corn and black bean relish over the last section of the lettuce. Place some lime wedges around the edges. Pour the salad dressing over and mix well. Enjoy!

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