Dilled, Crunchy Sweet-Corn Salad with Buttermilk Dressing

By • June 28, 2011 • 143 Comments


3,644 Save

Author Notes: Whenever I cook corn for my family, I cut off the tips, the better to fit the ears into my soup kettle. I always find myself nibbling the sweet kernels from those tips and wondering how else these little nubbins could be used. So when Amanda and Merrill announced the competition for best uncooked dish, I decided to try for a crunchy, chunky salad starring uncooked corn that would be colorful and satisfying. Here is the result. You could replace the shallots with some minced chives or scallions. This salad could replace cole slaw or potato salad as a side dish for a hefty sandwich. - creamteacreamtea

Food52 Review: Creamtea's thoughtfully composed corn salad has none of the rough edges a raw salad often brings. The dressing, tangy with buttermilk and yogurt, envelops the crunchy corn, peppers and cucumbers in a silky cloak. We love the hit of herbs (dill and parsley) and the zip of onion and garlic in the dressing; the creamy crumbles of salty feta are a perfect counterpoint to the sweet corn and peppers. - A&MA&M

Serves 6 as a side dish

For the salad:

  • 1 clove shallot, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 3 ears of fresh, uncooked corn, the kernels scraped from the cobs with a sharp knife (about 2 3/4 cup)
  • 4 Persian cucumbers, quartered lengthwise and sliced crosswise into 1/2 inch dice
  • 1 long red sweet pepper, seeded, ribs removed and diced
  • 1 small handfull fresh dill (about 4 smallish sprigs), minced
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • crumbled Feta cheese, rinsed, as a garnish

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2/3 cups plain European style thin yogurt, stirred
  • 1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons minced Vidalia or other sweet onion
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced and mashed with a pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
  1. Salt the shallot slices in 1/2 t. salt and allow to sit about 20 minutes to draw out any harshness. Rinse well with water and pat dry with a paper towel. In a large bowl toss the corn kernels lightly to separate them, add the shallot and the remaining salad ingredients and toss again to combine.
  2. In a smaller bowl combine the buttermilk, vinegar, onion, yogurt, and garlic and whisk to combine. Add the oil in a slow stream, whisking, until amalgamated. Season with freshly ground pepper and salt to taste.
  3. Serve the salad slightly chilled, garnished with the feta cheese. Pass the dressing separately.

Tags: sweet and salty. Summery, Crunchy

Comments (143) Questions (4)

Default-small
Default-small
Img_0974

5 months ago Nutbutter

My favorite go-to summer salad! You hear this all the time -- but truly -- it's so bright and fresh tasting. Also works great as a main with some chopped grilled chicken or shrimp.

Dsc00859_2

4 months ago creamtea

Thank you, Nutbutter! Great idea to turn it into a main with the addition of a protein.

Img_0791

7 months ago DECarro44

I made this to bring to a BBQ this summer with the dressing on the side and it was a hit. Actually, most people ate it without the dressing. I'm now a raw corn convert!

Dsc00859_2

7 months ago creamtea

Raw corn: good stuff, am I right?

Stringio

8 months ago Judy Schimmelpfennig

sounds great, but could canned corn and buttermilk dressing from grocery be used?

Dsc00859_2

7 months ago creamtea

I believe it is well worth the effort to try the recipe as given. Canned corn and bottled dressing won't taste the same at all. Canned corn is actually cooked and lacks the crispness of the fresh, and bottled dressing has all kinds of additives. You could break down the steps to suit your schedule: strip the corn kernels and dice the cucumbers in advance and place them separately in ziplock bags the day before if necessary. Mix the dressing the day before. Then assemble when ready. Or just try the dressing as written for other salads. It's really, really good, if I do say so myself!

Default-small

7 months ago TishAnn

If you don't have time for everything, leave the dressing and only make the salad. While the dressing is good (especially on cabbage salad), the salad really doesn't need it, especially if the salad sits for a hour or so. It almost makes it own dressing. Every time I make the salad people are surprised when I offer the dressing with it.

N642000053_274921_7414

8 months ago Hark

This salad was a really great summer salad, and I was easily able to incorporate a lot of things we had grown in our own garden. It ended up being a little watery after it sat in the fridge; did anyone else experience that? I wonder what made the veggies sweat.

Dsc00859_2

7 months ago creamtea

To make ahead, it's probably better to mix the vegetables in one container and the dressing separately, and combine at the last minute along with the feta.

Default-small

7 months ago TishAnn

cucumbers (and tomatoes, which I add to my salad) release their liquid as they sit.

Default-small

9 months ago ds14248

Any thoughts on a substitute for the cucumber? I have many of these ingredients in my CSA basket and would like to make this for family when they come in, but there is someone who cannot eat cucumber. Suggestions are welcome!

Img_0515

9 months ago Sarahlmorford

I might suggest you try something like jicama? You need the crunch. You could also try raw zucchini - it might work!

Dsc00859_2

9 months ago creamtea

You could just add a little extra red pepper, or maybe some celery, or as Sarah said, cubes of jicama, or hold out the cucumber for people to add individually... Thanks for trying it!

Default-small

7 months ago TishAnn

I've added baby heirloom tomatoes and a few kalamata olives to the mix. Turned out great. This is a very versatile salad. It can take a lot of tweaking with no problem.

Img_0515

10 months ago Sarahlmorford

Has anyone made this dressing a few days in advance? We are heading to the beach this weekend and I would love to make the dressing in advance if I can!

Screen_shot_2013-10-21_at_12.21.36_am

11 months ago Becca Ann Entenberg

This was easily the BEST thing I've eaten all year. I finished half the recipe (oops) for dinner just now and the whole time was mentally adding the ingredients to my grocery list so I can make it again as soon as possible.

Img_0515

over 1 year ago Sarahlmorford

I made this a few weeks ago with the last summer corn. It is SO good I could eat it daily. The balance between the corn, the feta and the tangy dressing is so wonderful. This is a keeper and I will make it again and again.

Dsc00859_2

over 1 year ago creamtea

I'm so glad you tried my recipe!

Default-small

over 1 year ago Beth Lass

I have just joined food52 and this was the first recipe I made- what an amazing salad! I made it as a side dish and had to restrain myself from having thirds as I wanted to have some leftovers for lunch! Thanks so much creamtea!

Dsc00859_2

over 1 year ago creamtea

So glad you tried it and liked it Beth!

Meg_b_f52

over 1 year ago meganvt01

Truly a spectacular recipe - as I said to my husband "this dish represents all that is good about summer." thanks creamtea for a "forever" staple in our house.

Dsc00859_2

over 1 year ago creamtea

Awwww. Thanks so much megan!

Open-uri20130129-6056-j45ebz-0

over 1 year ago tota

I just made this again, having loved it the first time, but found the parsley overwhelming..am thinking it might be good with cilantro and cherry tomatoes instead of red pepper, anyone tried this combo yet?

Dsc00859_2

over 1 year ago creamtea

Worth a try.... :)

Default-small

over 1 year ago experiment

What a fabulous salad. It is like biting into a mouthful of summer and so refreshing! I couldn't get enough. It has become one of me new favorite summer salads. Thanks for sharing!




Default-small

over 1 year ago Jenniferruth


Great salad!I used celery leaves instead of parsley because that is what I had. Very yummy and fresh!

Dsc00859_2

over 1 year ago creamtea

Jenniferruth, I like your take on it. Celery leaves sound like a delicious alternative.

Default-small

over 1 year ago Jenniferruth


Great salad!I used celery leaves instead of parsley because that is what I had. Very yummy and fresh!

Img_7818

almost 2 years ago EmilyC

Made this tonight for the first time -- what a lovely summery salad! Loved the dressing...I'll be making it for other salads as well.

Dsc00859_2

almost 2 years ago creamtea

Thank you for trying it EmilyC, so glad you liked it.

Default-small

almost 2 years ago Parrotmom

Delicious! Served with grilled salmon and it was a perfect combination.

Default-small

almost 2 years ago Parrotmom

Delicious! Served with grilled salmon and it was a perfect combination.

Dsc00859_2

almost 2 years ago creamtea

Thank you so much. About to serve it w/baked salmon for dinner tonight.

Default-small

almost 2 years ago Mianna

Congrats and thanks for a new recipe for my 4th potluck!! Good summer staple, adding fresh market tomatoes mmmmm.

Dsc00859_2

almost 2 years ago creamtea

Thanks Mianna! Enjoy it. I truly hope you like it!

Default-small

almost 2 years ago MarieWestmoreland

I haven't yet tasted the salad but this dressing is awesome!!

Dsc00859_2

almost 2 years ago creamtea

thank you!

Default-small

over 2 years ago Sylvia9000

This was mad tasty. Loved every kernel of it. The dressing was great too and gave a nice kick. Any suggestions for other uses for the dressing? I have quite a bit left over and no more corn...

Dsc00859_2

over 2 years ago creamtea

I would just put it on chopped salad (tomatoes, cukes, red peppers, and anything else crispy). I might add a little thinly-sliced Romaine or torn butter lettuce. Or a wedge of cool iceberg. Well, come to think of it, it would go over almost any salad (tho' mesclun, arugula, spinach or other bitter greens, not so much...)

Joye_labarge_bryan_2007_cropped

almost 2 years ago Chef Joyé LaBarge Bryan

Sylvia9000 & creamtea -

This dressing makes a wonderful marinade for chicken, pork, AND fish! It is also great to use as a basting sauce either in the oven or on the BBQ grill. You can also use it for mashed or creamed potatoes or to glaze parsnips, leeks, and baby carrots. My professional congratulations to creamtea for an excellent winner.