Last summer, over at The Kitchen Sink, Kristin put a salad together and declared herself lavished by the season. I couldn’t get her beautiful post out of my head, and did the best I could to emulate her on a recent evening. I took my farmers market haul, a couple slices of pancetta, and a pot of brown rice, threw it up in the air, and called it dinner.
This is an idea. It’s not a recipe. It’s the best that summer has to offer.
If you’re new to the kitchen, the notion of leaving the cookbook behind can be daunting. What if I add too much of something? What if the flavors don’t come together the way I want? What if, what if, what if. What if I told you that you can’t go wrong with this salad?
Everything you add to the bowl grows in summer. Thus, everything you add to the bowl tastes good with everything you add to the bowl. Start with Kristin’s ingredients, or start with mine. Add whatever sounds good to you. Grab a beer, sit outside, and while away the last days of summer.
To make a (dinner sized) salad for 2, you will need:
- 1/2 C brown rice (or grain of your choice)
- 1 shallot, diced fine
- 2 slices thick-cut pancetta, diced
- olive oil
- 4 ears corn, kernels cut from the cobs
- 2 tomatoes, large diced
- 2 big handfuls spinach
- 1/4 C white wine vinegar
- 1/4 C basil, julienned
Cook the brown rice according to package directions.
In a skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil, and add the shallot and pancetta, stirring until the pancetta is crispy and cooked. Add the corn kernels and toast for one minute, adding salt and pepper to taste. Add the rice, corn mixture, tomatoes, spinach and white wine vinegar to a large bowl and toss. Top with basil.
this one is great, too.