Nothing compares to the flavor of fresh summer corn right off the cob in this crowd-pleasing salad infused with the flavors of citrus and cumin. The spiced pecans are a delicious and crunchy topping, although regular toasted pecans may be used instead.
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 cup pecan halves
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon natural sugar
- ¼ teaspoon hot or sweet paprika
- Sea salt
- 3 ears fresh corn
- 2 (15.5-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2/3 cup chopped red onion
- 1 1/3 cups grape tomatoes, halved
- 2 navel oranges, zested (zest reserved)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 4 tablespoons rice vinegar
- Zest from 2 navel oranges
- 1 teaspoon spicy chili sauce
- 2 cloves garlic
- ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 loosely packed cups fresh baby spinach
1. For the Pecans: Preheat the oven to 350º F. Combine the oil and pecans in a large baking dish, stirring to coat. Sprinkle with the sugar, paprika, and salt to taste.
2. Place the pan in the oven and roast the nuts for approximately 10 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring once or twice during the cooking time. If the pecans aren’t sweet and spicy enough, add additional sugar, paprika, and salt once the nuts are removed from the oven but while they are still hot. Toss well and transfer to another container to stop the cooking. Allow the pecans to cool completely. Set aside.
3. For the Salad: Preheat the oven to 400º F. Rub the corn with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, and roast for 15 minutes or until just a few brown spots appear. Cut the corn off the cob and transfer to a large bowl. Peel the oranges and remove the pith, separate into sections, and slice each section in half crosswise. Add the black beans, tomatoes, and oranges to the bowl, and gently combine.
4. For the Vinaigrette: Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and process until well combined, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.
5. To serve: Drizzle the salad with the vinaigrette and toss gently to combine. Serve the salad on a bed of baby spinach topped with the pecans.