Snip dill with scissors and scatter on boiled potatoes, brown rice, shrimp, chicken or fish.

Tom Wallace, Star Tribune

Recipes: Summer Salad With Basil Dressing

  • August 15, 2012 - 2:12 PM


Makes 4 generous servings.

Note: From Joyce White.

• 2 or 3 large ears of fresh corn

• 4 large ripe tomatoes

• 1 large red or yellow onion

• Crisp lettuce leaves, drained and dried

Salad dressing:

• 1/2 c. olive or grapeseed oil

• 2 tbsp. cider vinegar

• 1 or 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

• 2 or 3 tbsp. crumbled or finely grated soft cheese, such as feta or goat's cheese

• 2 or 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil, or more if desired

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• Freshly ground black pepper


Husk the corn, remove and discard the silk, then rinse the corn well and set aside. Bring a large pan of water to a rolling boil. Drop in the corn and cook for 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat and allow corn to stand in the water for 5 minutes. Then drain corn and flood with cold water. Pat corn dry with toweling.

Using a sharp knife, cut the corn from the kernels (about 11/2 cup ), place into a bowl and set aside.

Rinse, drain and dry the tomatoes and onions. Cut tomatoes crosswise into 1/8 -inch thick slices. Peel and thinly slice the onion.

Spread the lettuce leaves on a large platter, and place on the tomatoes and onions in an overlapping pattern. Arrange the corn in the center of the platter. Chill the platter of vegetables for about an hour.

To make the salad dressing: In a small bowl combine oil, vinegar and lemon juice, mixing well. Stir in the cheese, basil, salt and black pepper, and beat briskly with a fork or whisk until creamy and well blended.

Just before serving, generously drizzle the salad dressing over the vegetables and serve immediately.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 365 Fat 29 g Sodium 373 mg

Carbohydrates 25 g Saturated fat 5 g Calcium 73 mg

Protein 5 g Cholesterol 4 mg Dietary fiber 5 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 vegetable, 1 bread/starch, 6 fat.



Makes about 3 cups.

Note: Fresh basil can substitute for the cilantro, if desired. From Joyce White.


• 6 ripe plum tomatoes (about 11/2 lb.)

• 2 to 3 tbsp. corn, grapeseed, safflower or peanut oil

• 2 chile peppers, if desired, such as serrano or habanero, chopped

• 2 or 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 1 small onion, chopped

• 1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro, or more if desired (see Note)

• 1 or 2 tbsp. lemon or lime juice or cider vinegar

• 1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste

• Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Rinse the tomatoes and pat dry with toweling. Preheat the broiler. Place the tomatoes on a large roasting or broiling pan and brush lightly with the oil.

Set the pan 4 to 6 inches from the heat. Broil the tomatoes, turning frequently, for 6 to 10 minutes or until lightly charred and shriveled.

Or, brush the tomatoes lightly with oil and roast on the lower rack of a 350-degree oven for about 45 minutes or until lightly charred and shriveled, turning over several times.

When done, remove the tomatoes from the pan, cool, then chop coarsely. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the chile peppers, garlic, onion, cilantro, lemon or lime juice or vinegar, salt and black pepper. Mix well.

Allow the salsa to sit at room temperature for up to 2 hours to develop flavor, then cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Nutrition information per 1/2 cup:

Calories 33 Fat 2 g Sodium 101 mg

Carbohydrates 3 g Saturated fat 0 g Calcium 8 mg

Protein 1 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat.



Serves 6.

Note: This is an old Southern favorite, a kind of relish that is delicious with barbecue chicken or spareribs or roast chicken or pork. From Joyce White.


• 4 or 5 large ears yellow or bi-colored corn

• 1/4 to 1/3 c. corn oil

• 1 onion, chopped

• 2 fresh bell peppers, preferably red or yellow color, cored and chopped

• 1 jalapeo chile pepper, or more, finely chopped

• 2 to 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 2 or 3 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

• 2 tsp. chile powder, or more if desired

• 1 tsp. salt

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 3 or 4 tbsp. cider vinegar, or more if needed


Husk the corn, remove the silk and discard. Rinse the corn and pat dry with toweling. Cut the kernels from cobs into a medium bowl, scraping to extract as much corn milk as possible. Set the corn kernels aside. Discard the cobs.

Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet. Add the onion, bell peppers, chile pepper, garlic and thyme to the pan, and saut over low heat for 5 minutes or until onions and peppers are soft but still glistening.

Stir in chile powder, salt and black pepper and saut 5 minutes longer, stirring. Add cider vinegar and mix the vegetables well.

Cook the corn over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 12 to 15 minutes, or until corn is tender and has picked up a golden yellow color. Don't overcook the corn. Serve hot or at room temperature as a relish.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 180 Fat 11 g Sodium 410 mg

Carbohydrates 22 g Saturated fat 1 g Calcium 16 mg

Protein 3 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 1 bread/starch, 2 fat.



Serves 4.

Note: Fresh fennel has a lovely, mild, licorice-like flavor. Choose a firm-textured fish, such as sea or black bass or red snapper. Have the fish cleaned and gutted, but leave the head on. From Joyce White.

• 1 whole fish, about 21/2 lb., scales removed

• 1/2 whole large lemon

• 11/2 tsp. salt

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 2 tsp. (or more if desired) fresh lemon thyme, crushed or chopped, or 1 tsp. dried thyme

• 2 garlic cloves, crushed

• 1 large bulb fresh fennel

• 3 to 4 tbsp. olive or grapeseed oil, divided


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Using a sharp knife, split the fish open like a book or have this done at the fish market. Leave the backbone in. Rinse the fish with cool water and pat dry with paper towels.

Squeeze the lemon juice all over the fish, including the cavity. Sprinkle fish with salt and black pepper, rub all over with the thyme and garlic, and set aside.

Rinse the fennel, including the feathery green fronds. Cut off the bulb from the stalk, leaving an inch or so of stem. Cut the bulb crosswise into thin slices. Snip off 3 or 4 fronds, chop finely and set aside.

Spread 1 tablespoon oil on bottom of a shallow griddle, roasting pan or cast-iron skillet just large enough to hold the fish.

Spread half of the fennel slices and the fronds in the pan, making a bed for the fish. Close the fish back up, place in the pan, and top with the remaining fennel slices and fronds. Drizzle the remaining oil over the fish, adding a tablespoon or more of oil if needed.

Set the pan of fish on the lower shelf of the oven and bake, occasionally spooning over drippings from the pan, for 20 to 25 minutes or until the flesh of the fish is opaque and tender, no longer shiny, and flakes easily with a fork.

Remove the fish from the oven and carefully transfer to a warm serving platter, using a large metal spatula.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 280 Fat 15 g Sodium 235 mg Saturated fat 2 g

Carbohydrates 5 g Calcium 80 mg

Protein 30 g Cholesterol 110 mg Dietary fiber 2 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 4 lean meat, 1/2 fat.



Serves 4 to 6.

Note: If serving at a later time, warm cornbread immediately beforehand by placing the pan in a preheated 350-degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Plain yogurt (not vanilla-flavored) thinned with a little hot water can substitute for the buttermilk in this recipe. From Joyce White.

• 1/3 c. oil, such as peanut, corn, or grapeseed, divided

•1 ear fresh corn (bi-color is especially nice)

• 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh sage, or more, or 11/2 tsp. dried sage

• 11/2 c. stone-ground cornmeal, such as Indian Head

• 3 tbsp. flour

• 2 tsp. baking powder

• 1/2 tsp. baking soda

• 1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste

• 1 c. buttermilk, at room temperature (see Note)

• 2 eggs, at room temperature

• 2 to 3 tbsp. boiling water


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Liberally oil a 9- or 10-inch cast-iron skillet using at least 1 tablespoon oil; set pan aside.

Remove the husk and silk from the corn. Rinse the corn and pat dry. Using a sharp knife, cut the kernels from the corn and set aside in a bowl.

Combine the remaining oil and sage in a small heavy skillet or saucepan. Place the pan on low heat and heat the oil, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and set aside.

Place the oiled baking skillet on the lower shelf of the oven to heat while mixing the cornmeal meal batter:

In a large bowl, sift together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir in the reserved corn kernels and the sage oil.

Add the buttermilk and eggs and beat the batter briskly for about 20 seconds. Stir in 2 tablespoons boiling water and mix quickly, about 10 seconds, adding a little more water if needed.

Remove the hot skillet from the oven and pour in the cornmeal batter, shaking the pan to level the batter.

Return the filled skillet to the lower oven shelf and bake the cornbread for 20 to 25 minutes, or until it is golden brown and puffed. Remove from the oven, let set for a minute or two, then cut into serving wedges and serve immediately.

Nutrition information per each of 6 servings:

Calories 290 Fat 15 g Sodium 540 mg Saturated fat 3 g

Carbohydrates 33 g Calcium 150 mg

Protein 7 g Cholesterol 64 mg Dietary fiber 3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 bread/starch, 3 fat.

© 2018 Star Tribune