I couldn’t not make anything.
It wasn’t an option.
Yes, it would require some planning and a few out of the way stops to procure the necessary ingredients, but it was no matter. I was not about to show up at Cathy and Vernon’s first dinner party (complete with their fancy, fresh-off-the-wedding-registry, china) without bringing something with me.
Even if it did mean finding a perfect and fabulous and fail-proof vegetable-based recipe that could be made the night before so I could bring it with me to the office the next day since I would need to head directly to their home in Pasadena after work and wouldn’t be able to do anything about it so help me God.
It really was no matter.
I just needed to breathe. A lot.
And then turn to Ina Garten.
While Ina Garten is most certainly not God, she is a goddess in the kitchen and her recipes are notorious for being simple, easy-to-make and, most importantly, delicious. It didn’t take me long to zero in on her beloved Fresh Corn Salad that the commenters insisted tasted even better when made the day before. They also insisted that the recipe be made exactly as the Garten Goddess wrote it…
That part I kind of ignored.
In my self-defense, I didn’t change it that much. I only added a cup of cooked edamame for color, upped the amount of corn by one ear and used a smidge more basil and red onion to balance out the recipe proportions. The dressing I left the same – exactly as the goddess intended it to be.
And in the end, it was good.
Fresh Corn Salad
Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook
Yield: 6 generous side servings
6 ears of yellow corn, shucked
1 cup shelled edamame, cooked
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons diced red onion
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
3 tablespoons good olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup julienned fresh basil leaves
Soak diced red onion in small bowl of water for approximately 15-30 minutes to help cut the harshness of the onion. Drain and set aside.
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the corn for 3 minutes until the starchiness is just gone. Drain and immerse it in ice water to stop the cooking and to set the color. When the corn is cool, cut the kernels off the cob, cutting close to the cob.
Toss the kernels in a large bowl with the red onions, edamame, vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Just before serving, toss in the fresh basil. Taste for seasonings and serve cold or at room temperature.