August is here and that means TOMATOES! I’m talking’ ’bout the juiciest, roundest, sweetest tomatoes fresh off the vine (or Farmer’s Market) that one can imagine.
And if you can imagine, we have 13 tomato plants this year. Yep, 13. 4 here at home and 9 at the plot of land we rent off-site. Which means we’re having tomatoes at every meal. And hopefully soon giving bags away to friends… and whoever else happens to come my way.
While I adore having some tomato slices with just a pinch of salt, I really love creating bomb-ass recipes around them. Like this corn salad! Yes, corn is not paleo. I get it. But neither am I… kind of. Fresh corn isn’t the kind of thing I trip about in my diet. First off, I don’t have it all of the time. If we’re grilling, we throw some
D’s corn on it. I love me some Cuban corn and that’s not going away. Also, I do believe fresh corn is a far cry from corn syrup which is just a junky sugar added to a zillion processed foods. Fresh corn in moderation doesn’t scare me. Granted, if I downed 4 cobs in one sitting, my stomach would revolt and give me a corn baby… but just a bit o’ corn? Nah. No problem.
While so much of what I eat falls under the “paleo” label, that doesn’t mean I’m completely black and white with it all. Besides the corn, another example of this is sugar. Do I think we use sugar responsibly in our diets today? No. Do I think Starbucks drinks use an obscene amount of sugar in them and are problematic? Yes. However, adding some sugar to bacon isn’t an issue in my book, often times it doesn’t even register on the nutrition facts. No biggie. (Unless you’re on a Whole30 and avoiding sugar altogether.) And if I’m going to indulge in something like ice cream or cookies, like good ‘ol fashioned ice cream and cookies, I don’t sweat it. Because those aren’t parts of my every day diet anymore. So once in awhile, eh. No biggie.
These are all things that I’ve figured out in my own personal Food Freedom. What works with and for me and what doesn’t. This is my personal way of being able to maintain an overall healthy diet that meshes into my real life.
I’ve been on this clean eating kick for about 3.5 years now and have figured out what works for me and I encourage you to do the same. What that needs though is honesty. Honesty with yourself. And discipline. And I promise, the longer you stay on the path, the easier it becomes and the better decisions you start to make. It becomes less hard to choose not to down yourself in a bowl of ice cream every night before bed. Although… some days that’s totally necessary and worth it. But is it every day?
My final thought on this, and I’ll talk about it in other post is that I’ve realized I am definitely an emotional eater. This became most evident during my Whole30s, even my most recent attempt. I’ve found that when I need to be soothed I turn to food for a quick fix. I naturally run on the more anxious, overachieving, how-much-can-I-fit-into-my-already-packed-schedule side of things but that always catches up to me. I’ve come to learn I put so much pressure on myself and my favorite way to release that is relaxing with some crap food at the end of the day. I’ve come to really accept this and understand it about myself and am learning ways to avoid it. But again, that’s all another post!
So Summer Corn Salad, let’s do this. I’m obsessed with it and it’s the ultimate dish to bring to a summer gathering. Or Labor Day. Or just to make at home. Your call.
Summer Tomato & Corn Salad
- 4 tablespoons butter or ghee melted
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1/2 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 [1/4] teaspoon salt
- 3 ears of corn
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
- 3 cups baby arugula
- 1/4 red onion thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Queso fresco to taste optional
- Add the butter or ghee, chili powder, paprika and 1 teaspoon of the salt to a saucepan and heat over medium heat until the butter or ghee has melted.
- Generously coat the ears of corn with the sauce and place them on the grill, reserve any additional sauce if left. Grill them for 15-20 minutes, turning them every 5 minutes.
- Once they're grilled, strip the kernels from the cob. (I've been using a handy-dandy corn zipper lately and love it.)
- Add the olive oil, lime juice and additional 1/4 teaspoon of salt to a bowl and whisk together to make a light dressing.
- Add the cherry tomatoes, arugula, onion, cilantro, and the corn to a bowl and add the dressing, toss to coat. Drizzle any of the additional chili powder / paprika sauce over top if you'd like.
- Top with optional quest fresco and serve.