Summer Tomato
and Roasted Corn Salad

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Heirloom Tomato
& Roasted Corn Salad
by Charlie Burke

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Last week, Joanne and I cooked for nearly sixty folks for a Growers’ Dinner at
the Sanbornton Historical Society (NH). Nearly everything on the menu came
from the Sanbornton Farmers’ Market, and August is the perfect time to pair
tomatoes and corn.

We used
heirloom tomatoes grown by local New Hampshire farms,
including Claudette Varney at her One Acre Farm along with flavorful
varieties from Surowiec Farm. I had planned to mix roasted corn with the
tomatoes, but when I tasted the sweetness of Matt Swain’s corn from Heritage
Farm, I decided to ring the plate with the corn and pile the tomatoes in the
center. This accentuates the play of the tomatoes’ acidity against the
sweetness of the corn.

The very high sugar content in the corn meant that it would caramelize well
at high heat. The dressing was simply extra virgin olive oil and coarse sea
salt; the acidity of the tomatoes beautifully balanced the oil. Buy the best
local corn and tomatoes, and you can’t go wrong!

For four:

5 – 6 pounds heirloom tomatoes
4 – 6 ears of corn, depending on size
Extra virgin olive oil, to taste
Coarse sea salt to taste
Lemon juice (optional)
1 cup finely chopped basil

Coarsely chop tomatoes into irregular shapes, 2 – 3 inches in size. Add sea
salt in 1-2 teaspoon amounts until a slight salty taste is detected. Add olive
oil to taste, tossing tomatoes with each addition. If tomatoes lack acidity, add
a tablespoon of lemon juice

Shuck corn, roll in olive oil and sprinkle lightly with coarse sea salt. Roast
over high heat on a grill or place 6 inches under an oven broiler. Cook until
some of the corn is dark brown (4 – 6 minutes). Do not turn – the underside
will be cooked, and the bright yellow contrasts nicely with the browned corn.

To plate, ring the periphery of a flat salad plate with the corn and mound the
tomatoes in the center. Sprinkle the tomatoes liberally with finely chopped
basil. The use of great ingredients in this minimalist recipe results in fantastic
taste of August in New England!

About the author: An organic farmer and avid cook, writer Charlie Burke is
the vice president of the New Hampshire Farmer’s Market Association (
www. and helps run the Sanbornton Farmers' Market. Along with his
wife, Joanne, he grows certified organic herbs, greens and berries at Weather
Hill Farm in Sanbornton, NH.
Tomato Roasted Corn Salad.  Click here for more recipes...
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