Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Black Bean & Corn Salad





We did it!

We are safe and sound and (sort of) moved in to our new place!

Okay, so there are still a few random boxes lying around, our mattress is on the floor, and the basement is kind of a disaster, but whatever. We're HERE!!!!

Oh! Quick question to all of you with second-story bedrooms that face the burning-hot rays of the setting sun:

How in the world do you keep those rooms from turning into dry saunas?? I feel like I'm sending my girls to bed in an oven. We've attempted window fans, black out drapes, and blasting the air conditioner (to no avail since the silly vents are on the ceiling... plus it costs a fortune to keep up that approach). Any new ideas would be much appreciated.

A little while ago, I received a very sweet email from a reader requesting a healthy, inexpensive, summer salad recipe.

As it happens, I came upon an idea for one the day we moved into our new town home.

We had little by way of food, so I hopped in my minivan, and drove to the nearest grocery store to pick up a few necessities.

I'm not going to lie.

I was hungry. Moving is big-time work, and eating in never at the fore-front of my mind. I pushed my cart past the deli section, and a colorful container of something called "black bean salad" caught my eye.

Normally, I'm not an impulse buyer, but that night all bets were off. The pre-made black bean salad ended up in my cart (along with a container of chocolate-covered cinnamon bears... someone should earn some sort of prize for creating those, by the way).

At home, I took a spoon the container of salad, and went to town. It was so good! I broke out a bag of tortilla chips, and continued my rather embarrassing consumption (inhalation??) of black beans, corn, peppers, onions, and cilantro.

I did wish for a few things... like a tiny bit of salt, and lime, and garlic, and maybe some heat... but other than that the simple, healthy ingredients were completely refreshing.

Shortly after, I made my own black bean and corn salad with a few tweaks to the original in order to suit my desires.

HEAVEN!

This black bean and corn salad recipe is packed with nutrients, vitamins, fiber, and all kinds of healthy goodies. Plus, it tastes amazing, comes together in NO time, and is relatively inexpensive to make. The subtle addition of lime, garlic, salt, and jalepeno elevate the flavors and make this salad absolutely incredible.

I think I'll be making this on many summer days to come.

Enjoy, everyone!!



Black Bean & Corn Salad  
Printable Version  

Makes about 7 cups

(Note: This recipe can be made even cheaper, and healthier if you decide to cook your own black beans, or use fresh corn... in which case, use 3 1/2 cups black beans, and 2 large cobs of corn.)

INGREDIENTS
2 15 oz. cans low-sodium black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 15 oz. can sweet whole kernel corn (drained and rinsed)
1 red bell pepper (diced)
1/3 cup red onion (finely diced)
2 scallions (finely diced)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1/3 cup diced cilantro
2 Tbsp. lime juice (Or the juice of 2 limes)
1 tsp salt
*opt. 1 small jalepeno (minced)

DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients in a large serving bowl. Toss gently. Serve immediately. This salad is great as a stand-alone, or you can serve it with tortilla chips. Store in the refrigerator 3-5 days.



15 comments:

  1. Yum! Can't wait to make this :)

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  2. It sounds wonderful to me, but I'm afraid I'm the only one who'd think so here at my house!

    www.dressupnotdown.blogspot.com

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  3. I made this for dinner tonight, with a few alterations. I used fresh cilantro (store didn't have dried), and left out the scallions (forgot to put them in), but even then it was delicious. I served it with beef burritos, both as a side dish, and I put some in the burrito, and I couldn't get enough! This is going to be a summer staple in our house for sure! Thanks!

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    1. Yay!! I'm so glad you liked it. The recipe actually calls for fresh cilantro... But I can definitely see how I made it confusing. :) Adding it to a burrito...what a great idea!

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  4. Andrea, we have a south window/bedroom......we put a fan in the window at night, take it out in morning and shut window/curtains. It keeps the room reasonable temp. Maybe this would help????

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    1. Thanks for the suggestion! We'll try putting the fans in just at night. We had used them day and night (to either exhaust, or bring in air depending on if the air was warmer or cooler outside). Before that, we used window darkening curtains, and only opened the windows at night as suggested. We'll give your route a go. :)

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  5. We recently moved to the dessert and have had to deal with similar issues in the bedrooms. If it is really bad, you don't just need black out curtains. You need to reflect out the light when the sun is shining on the window. Things to accomplish this include white curtain (or sheet, etc) or reflective curtain (can buy on amazon etc.). You can accomplish similar with aluminum foil or a one or two of those windshield car shades.

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    1. Great ideas! I wouldn't have thought of reflecting the light away.

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  6. I have a similar recipe that I love! It uses tomatoes instead of bell pepper, and I also like to add diced avocado if I know there won't be leftovers. It's so good with a quesadilla, like salsa, or just served over brown rice.

    Good luck with the bedroom! We have the same problem. We got room darkening cellular shades that help keep some of the heat, and plenty of light, out, and we use fans at night. Luckily, kids don't seem to mind it being a little extra warm sometimes!

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    1. Hi Naomi. :) I have another recipe with similar changes that you mentioned above but I call it "Cowboy Caviar." It's another favorite, for sure!

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  7. This was a great salad but even better dip with natcho's! It makes a good size recipe, but still didn't last long! :)This will be a receipe repeat for sure! We all loved it!

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  8. Have you considered putting a swamp cooler (evaporative cooler) in their room? They are relatively inexpensive (especially compared to blasting the air.) I'm not sure where you live, but if it isn't too humid there it should do wonders.

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    1. We are in Utah... so not humid. We are looking into swamp coolers and small AC units... we are also considering having the girls sleep in the basement for a couple months. :)

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  9. I have to share that I make a similar salad that I LOVE. The dressing has red wine vinegar and lime juice, olive oil, and minced chipotle chile (instead of jalapeño). I also put in diced tomatoes and avocado, and use whatever color bell pepper I have on hand. I've never tried scallions or garlic in it. Oh, and for the corn... frozen roasted corn from Trader Joe's adds the best depth and a touch of sweetness. YUM.

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  10. Hi Andrea! I love your blog! I have always cooked from scratch( Thanks to my Mom and Grandma who were great examples by always cooking from scratch for the family) I always knew that it saved a lot of money but when I see your "year break downs" I am amazed at just how much savings it really adds up to!!! Plus its good knowing what ingredients your consuming and its just delicious! Thanks so much for sharing all your great recipes and hints! Now about your hot room situtation...we put a reflective film up on our storm door windows..it really helps to reflect the sun and the heat ..you can immediately tell a difference as soon as you get it on..its very easy to apply and durable..my way to many but love 'em too much ....4 Chihuahuas love to constantly jumps up on the bottom window of the door and no harm has happened to the film.It will cause the room to be very slightly darker due to it reflecting the sun.If you ever want to remove it there is no problem ..it comes off easily..I have had it my windows for years and still good as new..You find it at home improvement stores like Lowes or Home Depot..Hope this helps you! Thanks for all the time and effort of giving all of us your great hints and delicious recipes! Blessings to you and your family! Becky

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