Mexican Street Corn Quinoa Salad
Zippy flavor of Mexican street corn in a salad bowl with hearty quinoa, juicy strawberries and sweet mango.
Mexican Street Corn Quinoa Salad - this scrumptious corn salad is two-salad-flavors-in-one. In this, I have combined fresh flavors of California cuisine with sweet and spicy flavors of Mexican Street Corn to make a yummy lite summer dinner salad!
One thing is sure, every fork of this salad has something delicious to offer!
Sweet strawberries, creamy avocado, sweet mango, charred grilled corn, fresh mint, quinoa, a lemon-chipotle dressing to balance the sweetness and to bring subtle smokey heat!!! Does any of this sound boring?
Oh, and how did I miss to mention "Cotija Cheese". A Mexican street corn is not "street corn" without this salty buttery cheese!
My inspiration for this salad was - summer season and of course Mexican street corn. Corn is one favorite vegetable of Vishal. Every grocery trip, he will pick few corn on the cob and here is how he like to eat:
Soak corn on the cob with husk in the water, then throw on the grill until charred from outside and has streamed from inside. Now, discard the charred husk, brush some butter on tender steamed corn kernels, then grill until slightly charred. Pour some hot sauce and cheese over and devour!!
Isn't sound yummy?? Perfectly tender, sweet corns with spicy hot sauce and buttery cheese! This simple summer gift will transport you to Mexican Street Fair. Or for all those who have never been to Mexico including me... to California Summer Fair.
I even have a miniature of that (Vishal's fav) street corn on the side in main photo. He ate it right after the first shot. ;) For this one, I didn't go extra-mile of steaming but simply grilled the corn on open flame. However, without doubt, I have tried to capture every flavor of that spicy grilled street corn in this corn and quinoa salad.
Instead of hot sauce, I decided to make a spicy chipotle-lemon-olive oil dressing which can make any hot sauce run for it's flavor. It is that good!! No compromise on flavors here! Look at the beautiful orange color of dressing.. shining like summer sunshine!
My inspiration of California flavors in Mexican street salad are totally inspired from fresh juicy seasonal strawberries in the market. There is no better time to enjoy strawberry salad than this time of year... when fragrance of fresh strawberries won't let you pass the strawberry stand without a pound or two.
... and avocado... a Mexican salad is not Mexican Salad if it has no avocado!! Isn't it?
Not just for name-sake or ingredient-sake, the creaminess of avocado takes a simple humble salad to whole new level. So, promise me, you will not skip avocado in this salad. :)
Even though Mango is a tropical fruit and may not be California cuisine representative... yet it compliments the sweet-sour flavors of the salad. Plus mangoes love company of chili and lemon and I decided to make everyone happy today!
A few words about the quinoa in salad bowl!! A humble yet powerful grain, this whole-natural-grain has taken the food industry by storm. Not just because it is a super-grain, good for healthy and gluten free... so and so.. I enjoy quinoa because it's nutty texture, and it's quality to take-on flavor you add to it. I love sauce humble ingredients which can I can color in any flavor I want.
I hope you enjoyed a healthy, gluten-free, and flavorful start of Meatless Monday! I see around soon again!
Have a wonderful day! -Savita
Love Salads? Lighten-up summer with these delicious salad :
Mexican Street Corn Quinoa Salad
- 1. Make Dressing - In a food processor, add all the dressing ingredients and pulse until smooth and emulsified. Taste and adjust salt. Transfer to a salad bowl.
- 2. Grill both corn on the cob on open flame or a gas grill until nicely charred from all sides. Let them cool slightly, then run knife through to remove kernels from the cob. Set aside.
- 3. In a wide salad bowl, add dressing, and quinoa. Mix well. Now, top with all salad ingredients - diced tomatoes, scallion, torn mint, cilantro, sliced mango, sliced avocado, strawberries, and serrano (if using). Mix just before ready to serve/eat. Additional Notes: Refrigerate leftovers for up-to 2 days.
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