Unfortunately my one personality trait right now is “teeth” (wait: “tired bartender” is the sole other facet to this diamond) so this salad that I made was inevitably tooth-related: devised in anticipation of my wisdom teeth being from my mouth untimely ripp’d next Monday (that’s like, a reference to MacBeth there). I know all I’ll be consuming next week is broth, pureed foods, painkillers and my own drool, so I wanted to make myself something crunchy, salty, spicy and acidic – everything my tender mouth will be shunning mere days from now.
That vision ended up taking the form of this blackened corn and tortilla salad – crunchy toasted peanuts, juicy charred corn, shards of tortilla, crisp cos lettuce and plenty of sourness and heat in the form of lime, chilli, salt and cumin. Plus some fairly blameless cherry tomatoes.
Being my generally idiotic heedless self it will come as no surprise when I tell you that I broke my SD card for my camera somehow and so had to instead take the photos of this salad on my phone (other things I’ve broken this week: my Laura necklace, a large glass jar of hot sugar syrup, the will and resilience of everyone around me) so as such the effect is a liiiittle more grainy than I’d like. Also my flatmate of the past year moved out and had the temerity to take his own property with him so I no longer have his immensely sexy slab of a coffee table to take my photos on, and as the next logical place for me to eat is in bed that’s why everything here is pictured against my duvet, giving it something of an eighties glamour shot vibe.
Fortunately I displayed competency in one area at least: this salad is fantastically delicious. The corn is deliciously sweet and charred and chewy, and the textures of the peanuts, fried tortilla, and lettuce – each crunchy in their own way, the peanuts all soft and (duh) nutty, the tortillas crisp and oily, the lettuce super fresh – is extremely delightful. The chilli and lime gives it a great big high kick of flavour and on top of that it couldn’t be easier to make. By the way you really only need one large tortilla but they taste so good when they’re all fried up that I allowed an extra one to account for you eating them all as you make the salad. Maybe you’re more restrained than me, who knows. That aside, the quantities of each ingredient are pretty much up to you and your personal tastes. If avocados are not housing-market-preventatively-expensive in your neighbourhood they they would be a delicious addition and there’s also nothing stopping you adding some meat, but as it is it’s pretty perfect.
blackened corn and tortilla salad
a recipe by myself
- one small cos lettuce
- two flour or corn tortillas
- a handful of peanuts
- one punnet cherry tomatoes
- two cups of frozen corn kernels
- olive oil
- a teaspoon or so of chilli flakes
- a pinch of cumin
- sea salt
- a lime
Heat up a large frying pan over a high heat. Toast the peanuts till they’re lightly browned and tip them into a big mixing bowl. Heat up some butter or olive oil and tear the tortillas into small pieces and fry them in the hot pan till they’re crisp and golden. Add them to the bowl with the peanuts. Next, tip the corn into the pan and let it sit without stirring too much so that it gets slightly charred and browned as it cooks.
While this is happening, wash and tear up the lettuce leaves and add them, with the cherry tomatoes, into the mixing bowl. Once the corn is where it needs to be tip that into the mixing bowl. Squeeze in the juice of a lime, add the chilli flakes and cumin, some sea salt and plenty of olive oil. Give it a good stir and then divide between two bowls. Sprinkle over some more cumin and chilli if ya like.
This honestly makes what I would consider to be two servings, but I ate the entirety in bed (as pictured!) before falling immediately into a deep sleep, I’m not sure if that was related to the ingredients or more to my generally being tired, but I can heartily recommend the two activities together.
As I said in the last blog post, I’m actually really nervous about getting these teeth out – something about the sedation process and the potential recovery time and oh, the IMMENSE PAIN and BRUTAL PRICE TAG but I am going to be taken under the wing of my dear friends Kate and Jason who will be looking after me and making sure I don’t like, run naked through the town while coming out of sedation (or indeed, at any time, no one should rule it out completely.)
title from: Say Anything, Night’s Song. Praise the night, the only time I feel alright.
One Direction, Teenage Dirtbag. Oh, these simpler times! Their cover of this song is so perfect, and the way Harry Styles is all “Her name is Noelle” at the start does funny things to my heart.
Oh Land, Sleepy Town. This song is so dreamy and beautiful and it’s not on Spotify which is ruining my entire life!
Chance the Rapper, No Problem. Such! A! Bop!
next time: I probably won’t get the opportunity to write till after my tooth-times so it’ll be wall to wall soft foods.