The sun. The warm air. The sounds of laughter and roar of the lawn mower. The scent of freshly cut grass. When I sat down earlier to write this blog post, all of these things beckoned me outside. I tried to soldier on but all I found was a sputtering of ho-hum sentences curving around the photos I had so carefully edited earlier. Finally, I conceded defeat, snapping my laptop shut and heading outside to trim our bushes, play an impromptu game of soccer and grill burgers for dinner.
In the end, I was smiling, no longer held hostage by words that wouldn’t come or feeling of being torn between what I needed to do and what I wanted to. It just goes to show that sometimes the best thing we can do is to walk away and let life happen.
This salad is a let life happen sort of thing too. It’s so simple that it can practically be made with zero planning. Red pepper, avocado, corn, black beans … these are things we practically always have on hand here at this time of year. Avocados are in season and affordable at about $1 each. We easily eat three each week. Lime juice? It’s my citrus of choice, so it’s almost always in the fridge in some form or another. All together, it’s a magical combination that makes a perfect side dish for lunch or dinner. Or you could totally snack on the leftovers. Don’t worry — I won’t tell.
What this salad isn’t is terribly unique. Yes, I actually said that. This is my version that I whip up but there are dozens of other similar ways to make it. Mine was inspired by a salad my cousin shared with me at the beach recently. Hers had lemon juice as the citrus and a few more ingredients (tomatoes and some sort of onion, if I remember correctly). Meanwhile, I made this for a family party on Saturday and arrived to discover that another very similar salad was also on the table. That cool, tangy version used a lot more lime juice and had green onions and tomatoes in it but no avocado. It was so refreshing. That’s three versions … all from within our one family. Do you have one too? Spill in the comments!
The avocado lends a smooth creaminess to this salad, enveloping the red peppers, black beans and corn. It has enough cilantro to give the salad that earthy freshness without allowing the pungent herb to overtake the other flavors. It’s a perfect balance, even if you aren’t usually a big cilantro fan. But cilantro fans might want to double the amount. But for me, it’s just right.
This salad? It’s just lovely for spring.
- 2 ears fresh corn, peeled, boiled for 10 minutes and kernels removed
- 1 large red pepper, finely diced
- 1 tbsp minced fresh cilantro
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (I use organic)
- 1 Hass avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
- 1 lime, juiced
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Stir together the corn kernels (break apart any large clumps, but small ones are okay), red pepper, cilantro, black beans and avocado. Drizzle with lime juice and olive oil. Toss well. Season with salt and pepper to desired flavor.
- Chill until ready to serve.
- Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to two days.