Jul 7, 2010

Too Many Recipes?

I used to frequent Allrecipes.com.  You know, the place where it's all recipes all the time.  Or do they mean all existing recipes ever?  When I browsed over there it sure felt like it!  I'd save recipe after recipe, getting myself in deeper and deeper, straying from my simple purpose of finding something new and quick for dinner.  Before I knew it, it was time to actually get in the kitchen and make dinner.

But it's quicksand!  (Not that I've ever been stuck in quicksand; all of my info comes straight out of Gilligan's Island.) Thoughts of looking at just one more recipe would pull me in deeper.  The more I tried to free myself of allrecipes, the more engulfed I'd get.  I'd have to claw my way out of a chin-deep pile of recipes I had to try.

Like most things on the internet, one recipe led to another and another and another that looked interesting.  Things like more recipes like this, what to drink, a tweaked version by Doreen in Altoona all looked innocent enough.  But one wrong step, I'd loose my footing and be consumed.  Time-wise anyway.  It became overwhelming...this self-imposed pressure to cook everything in sight. 

There was no bumbling net-wielding Gilligan or know-it-all Professor with a coconut phone dialing 911.  But I managed to escape with a few really great recipes clutched to my chest as I gasped for air.  No, I'm not dramatic or anything.

Black Bean & Corn Salad II is one of those recipes.  We love to eat this in the summer.  The colors are festive.  The lime dressing is light and bright and perfect for this time of year.   It's also a versatile dish.  It can be eaten with chips as a chunky salsa, as a side (we like it with grilled chicken), or as a meal on its own (we sometimes eat it for lunch).  This is one of my favorite things to make for cookouts--and I don't have to worry about this salad spoiling while sitting out.  I like that it's healthier than a mayo-based salad.  And it's very easy to make...another plus for busy summers.

I made some minor adjustments to reflect what my family likes (or doesn't--I'm looking at you, cilantro hater), but I haven't changed the recipe too much.  The original recipe can be seen here at allrecipes.com. 

I'm submitting this to Kahakai Kitchen for the upcoming Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays roundup.

Also linked to What's on the Menu Wednesday @ Dining With Debbie

And linking up with Seaside's Simplicity's June Salad Roundup

Mise en place:
For the dressing you'll need lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, cayenne pepper
For the salad you'll need black beans, corn, tomatoes, green onion, avocado

First work on the dressing so the flavors can blend.  Combine the dressing ingredients in a small bowl or jar.  Whisk or shake.  It's fun!

Next is my trick that I like to be all smug about.
When I take this to a cookout, I don't want brown avocados. 
No one ever wants to have the dreaded potluck dish that doesn't get eaten.

Carefully toss the chunks of avocado in the dressing and let them sit there until it's time to serve.  The flavors in the dressing will meld and the avocados won't embarrass you.

Combine the corn, black beans, green onions, and tomatoes.

The original recipe calls for frozen corn.  I've tried this with frozen, canned (drained), and even fresh.  Whatever I happen to have.  When I use frozen corn, I thaw it.

Drain and rinse the beans so you don't get any bean sludge.  Yuck.

Personally, I like a lot of green onion so I go crazy with that.

Sometimes I chop up tomatoes.  Sometimes I use halved cherry tomatoes...depends on which looks better when I shop.
When you're ready to serve or walk out the door, bowl in hand, gently fold the dressing and avocados into the salad.

Thanks Jen whoever-you-are from allrecipes.com.  This is a summer favorite.

Next week, I'll be back with another No Sweat Summer cool treat: Coffee Granita.

Black Bean and Corn Salad
adapted from allrecipes.com

1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 or 2 avocados
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, drained (frozen or fresh can also be used--thaw if frozen)
2 tomatoes, chopped OR 2-3 handfuls of cherry tomatoes, halved
4-6 green onions, thinly sliced

In a small bowl or jar, add lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, and cayenne pepper. Mix or shake well.

Cut avocado into chunks and add to the dressing. Let sit to blend flavors of the dressing and to prevent the avocado from browning.

In a salad bowl, combine beans, corn, tomatoes, green onions. Gently fold in the dressing and avocado chunks. Can be eaten as a salad or as a chunky salsa with tortilla chips.

Last week M at Betty Crapper (love that name) gave me a Beautiful Blogger Award.  She should have given me a Lazy Blogger Award because I'm just getting around to it.  The truth is, I had a hard time coming up with 10 things about myself.  I'm really not that interesting.

Thanks for the award, M!  I can't promise I'll come up with 10 things.

The rules: list 10 facts about yourself & pick 10 beautiful bloggers to pass this award on to

1. I am full of contradictions.  I prefer to use the term "dualities" b/c it sounds nicer.
2. Snakes and spiders don't bother me at all.  But I'll scream like the girl being hacked to death in a slasher flick if a grasshopper even looks my way.
3. I like okra smothered with tomatoes.  Okra in a tomatoey gumbo makes me not so happy.
4. I like things to be orderly.  All the place mats on the table have to be aligned just so.  The big pile o' mail sitting on that table for the past week...ehh, I'm ok with that.
5. I love throwing out junk.  I mean, it thrills me.  So how could I have raised a child who saves Chiquita banana stickers?  On the switch plate in the bathroom no less?
6. Geez.  Only halfway and I'm stuck.
7. In 4th grade I got hit in the face with a softball in PE and got a black eye.  But not just any black eye.  My eye was so swollen I could look down and see my lower lid. 
8. A few years later, I slid into first and ended up in a pile of dog poop.
9. I no longer play any form of baseball.
10. I think I should just leave things at that.

10 Beautiful Bloggers:

The Friday Friends

My Grandma's Recipe Box

Dining With Debbie

Hun...What's for Dinner?

Culinary Covers

Amy's WFD Blog!

Kahakai Kitchen

Mom!  What's for Dinner?

Recipes Straight from the Kowboys Home

Peaches Pantry


  1. ha haha.... you are funny. (I'm thinking of your baseball stories ) and me too... my throw rugs have to be just so in front of the door, Or a picture cannot be crooked, but my table can have a pile of books or mail and it doesn't bother me.
    I am inviting you to my house now tho, to help me declutter my "red room" (it has two red walls, and some Americana decor...it's my son's old bedroom) I save things I think I will "scrapbook" someday. All kinds of things, brochures, newspaper clippings, and the list goes on. and on. and on. I NEED HELP!! But so far, it's only that room. It hasn't creeped out into the rest of the house.
    Thanks for the blog award. I need to think about my "things".

  2. We often make a recipe similar to this one--love it!

  3. delicious looks wonderful for summer suppers

  4. That salad looks real good and perfect for summer. I learned something new about keeping avocado pretty.

    You are welcome about the award. Sliding into poop, ugh. Doesn't sound so fun. I wonder what would happen if you received a nice close up picture of a grasshopper? hmmmmmmmm

  5. Thanks for commenting, everyone!

    Debbie: I would probablly enjoy decluttering your red room!

    nannykim: what do you do differently with the recipe?

    shopannies: it does make a great (and easy) summer meal. I thought of something else I do with it: wrap it up in tortillas. Great for when it's too hot to cook.

    M: you are evil ;) I won't be opening any emails from you!

  6. Wow! Thanks so much for the compliment. I will do my best to post to the award this week...no grandbabies until Saturday when Perfect Boy turns 5! Loved this post by the way. Black bean and corn salad/salsa is one of my all-time favorites.

  7. Mmmm that beans and corn salad sounds refreshing and delicious! A perfect summer dish.

  8. This does look like the perfect summer salad. Thanks for sending it to Souper Sundays.

    Thank you to for the award. ;-) I loved reading your list of 10 things. I would stop all forms of softball too after all that!

  9. p.s. I've given you another award. Don't worry, you don't have to come up with anything about yourself.


  10. I just loved this post, for so many reasons...I too have had that quick sand feeling as I dive in to the internet looking for a recipe... and Gilligan's Island..YES! That must be where I learned all I know about quick sand. Thanks for the award! Haven't really figured out how to manage these, but your posting made it much clearer...AND I love throwing junk away too, but admittedly, my definition of junk changes, ha ha...and the joy of tossing junk is greater when it's someone elses :)

  11. I just read your comment about the pasta with the whole head of garlic and the pasta with the bacon and breadcrumbs. I definitely liked the pasta with the whole head of garlic better! That one is hard to beat.
    The pasta with bacon and breadcrumbs was good though.

    Hope you're doing good!!

  12. Just found you through Souper Sundays. I love this recipe, as I love black beans and corn too. Congrats on the awards. Enjoyed visiting and I'll be back often. Great humor.

  13. What a fun and entertaining post and of course what's not to love about this salad! I make a similar one that I'm totally addicted to! Thanks for linking it up to my salad round up. Have a great weekend :-)


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