We eat a lot of Mexican-inspired food, and sometimes the sides stump me. I know the traditional sides are rice and beans, but since Mexican food can sometimes be on the heavier side, I like serving something light on the side. This corn salad and guacamole salad are my standbys, and I see no reason to go back to rice and beans when I have these delicious, healthy, and flavorful dishes in my repertoire.
Since I don't really care for mayonnaise, I sub at least half for Greek yogurt. I also have used feta and queso fresco when I couldn't find cojita. Any mild crumbly cheese will work well. Bell peppers are a nice addition, and I always add cilantro as well.
Grilled Mexican Corn Salad
adapted from Food and Wine
serves 4 as a side
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 Tablespoon minced red onion
- 3 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 6-8 ears of corn, husked
- vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise or Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
- 4 ounces cojita, ricotta salata, feta, or queso blanco, crumbled (about 1 cup)
- 3 Tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
- kosher salt and ground black pepper
- hot sauce
Combine the garlic, onion, and lime juice in a medium bowl and toss to coat. Allow to stand for 10 minutes. Whisk the mayonnaise (or yogurt) and chile powder into the onion mixture. Set aside.
Grill the corn 10 minutes, turning every 2-3 minutes, until lightly charred and tender. Allow to cool slightly, then cut the kernels off the cobs and add to the dressing. Toss with the cheese and cilantro, mixing well to coat with the dressing. Season with salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Serve with additional hot sauce if desired.