Blistered Corn and Asparagus Salad with Salmon dressed in a creamy lemon chive dressing ~ it’s a main course salad with a whiff of spring. You’ll feel satisfied and good about yourself after polishing it off, and isn’t that what it’s all about?
Talk about a satisfying salad…this one gets high marks for protein (salmon) and smart carbs (corn) along with tons of vitamins, minerals, and fiber (asparagus, arugula.) It’s got a February appropriate hint of springtime, too. This is the kind of salad that doesn’t leave you with that empty I just ate a salad and now I’m still hungry feeling, know what I mean?
Take the Main Course Salad healthy challenge!
Try to incorporate one main course salad dinner into your weekly meal plan. You’ll reduce calories, get extra needed fiber, extra greens, and a refreshing change from heavier meals…
- Poached Halibut Salad with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
- Grilled Chicken Greek Salad
- Thai Beef Salad
- Falafel Salad Bowl
- Nicoise Salad
I use baby arugula because I love the spicy flavor, but also because it can stand up to the hefty toppings of a main course salad. It doesn’t wilt as quickly as some other greens after it’s been dressed, too.
I like to buy my baby arugula in a tub rather than a bag, I think it tastes fresher, but I’m a stickler about checking those dates. Rifle through the stack, guys, it’s worth it.
How to blister vegetables like corn and asparagus ~
Blistering corn and asparagus couldn’t be easier and can be accomplished in several ways. Whichever method you choose it will only take a few minutes, so pay attention!
- I like to lightly brush any veggies with olive oil before blistering, it helps speed up the process and gives the veggies a nice glisten.
- If you’ve got an outdoor grill, pop them right on the grate. Turn them frequently.
- On a gas range you can hold the corn over the open flame, like I did today. Use tongs, and use caution, the corn can pop and spit as it chars, but it works like a charm. I use this method to roast eggplant for my Smokey Baba Ganoush, or when I want a little charring on the corn for my Cowboy Caviar.
- A stove top grill pan works well, too. Use a pan that can withstand high heat, like cast iron, and crank the heat up high. Let the pan heat for a few minutes before adding the veggies. Work in batches so you don’t crowd the pan.
- You can always blister veggies under the broiler. Arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet and place on the top rung under the flame.
TIP: I blister the corn and asparagus, but don’t cook it further in any way. Both corn and asparagus need very little heat just to bring out their flavor and take the raw edge off. The charring adds great flavor and the veggies stay firm.
A convenient package of off season corn allowed me to make this now, in February. It’s another example of our shrinking world when it comes to produce, and I have to say those fresh ears of corn look pretty tempting right now.
I love love love my dressings, and this creamy lemon chive dressing is a winner. A touch of honey and Dijon mustard creates a ‘creamy’ emulsion along with the lemon juice and olive oil, when shaken vigorously. I like to add everything to a small mason jar, screw on the cap, and shake. It’s one of the most satisfying kitchen hacks ever, and the results are instant, beautiful, and delish. Just look at that sunny color!
If you need more convincing to shake up your own dressings, check out the list of ingredients on a simple bottle of dressing the next time you’re in the supermarket…where do they come up with this stuff? I actually think it’s unconscionable that something so simple should be made with so much garbage.
Blistered Corn and Asparagus Salad with Salmon
- 1/2 pound wild caught salmon filet, you can also use leftover cooked salmon
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt and fresh cracked pepper
- 2 ears corn
- 1 bunch thin asparagus
- 3 large handfuls of baby arugula, make sure it is dry
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon, about 2 Tbsp
- 1 tsp creamy Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp honey
- pinch of salt
- 1 Tbsp snipped chives, don't use dried
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment and lay out the salmon. Brush lightly with oil and season with salt. Bake for about 20 minutes, or just until the fish flakes.
- While the fish bakes, it's time to blister the veggies. Trim the lower third of the asparagus stems and discard. Brush them lightly with oil, and do the same with the corn.
- There are several ways to go about this, depending on your situation. If you are grilling, put the corn and asparagus on the grates and turn often until they are charred in spots and their color becomes brighter. This will only take a few minutes. You can use a stove top grill pan, or if you have a gas range you can char the corn right over the gas flame on your stove top, just hold it with tongs and be careful. The veggies can be charred under the broiler, too. Place them on a baking sheet and set on the level closest to the broiler flame. Shake the pan to turn the asparagus a few times while blistering.
- After the veggies have cooled slightly, run a knife down the sides of the corn to remove the kernels, and chop the asparagus into 1 inch pieces.
- Put the arugula in a large wide salad bowl and toss with the cooled veggies and just enough dressing to moisten. Season with a little salt to taste.
- Flake the salmon in the center of the salad. Drizzle the salmon with more dressing, season with fresh cracked pepper, and sprinkle with snipped chives. Enjoy!
Make this Blistered Corn and Asparagus Salad with Salmon your own ~
- You could use grilled shrimp instead of salmon.
- Or leave the salmon out altogether for a lovely vegan corn and asparagus salad, or corn and asparagus succotash?
- Baby spinach or baby kale would work for the greens, but I don’t recommend a delicate baby lettuce or ‘spring mix’, the greens won’t hold up under the weight of the other ingredients.
- Fresh dill or tarragon would work in place of chives.
- Corn, asparagus and salmon is a winning combination ~ how about grilling them up in foil packets
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