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hello september

Recipe: heirloom tomato and corn salad

It’s good to be back in Colorado. It’s good to be home. I had a lovely and exhausting working trip in Maine last week and will write that up for you shortly. I know some people think these trips are vacations, but 1) I never relax and 2) I never relax. You knew this, right? Right! Now that I no longer feel like everything around me is rocking back and forth, I’m trying to get back into the groove over here. Kaweah was super waggy to see me again, sniffing my bags and my pants to figure out where I’d been. It was nice to cuddle my pup, hug my guy, and sleep more than 5 hours (in my own bed!).


kaweah hanging out in the yard

the house got a new stain while i was away



It is now officially September, The Month of Awesome. Awesome for so so so many reasons that I can’t even list them all here. Awesome because we still get the last dribbles of summer splendor in the markets. Awesome because the light and the weather has changed subtly. Awesome because our leaves will turn at the end of the month. Awesome for the birthdays, and the crisp cool nights, and the smell of fireplace smoke on the air, the stillness, the arrival of my favoritest season ever: autumn, which sounds a lot like awesome. So yeah, there’s all of that and more. But I won’t shock you with apple cider and pumpkins just yet. We’re going to milk summer for all it is worth. I’m talking tomatoes.

heirloom tomatoes, corn, and basil



I hope you aren’t sick of tomatoes by now, because I am never ever ever sick of tomatoes… EVER. Aside from eating tomatoes straight up like you would an apple, another way I’ve been enjoying them this summer is in a non-lettuce salad. It takes no time to prepare and it is fabulous enough to serve to dinner guests. The corn could be optional, but I can’t resist those sweet ears as the season winds down. You could serve the corn raw, but I like to either give it a quick nuke in the microwave (30 seconds) or a blanch in boiling water.

cut the kernels off the cob

slice the tomatoes



Slice your tomatoes however you see fit – wedges, rounds, chunks – it’s ALL good. Personally, I’m a fan of the shape that can easily fit into your mouth. Then chuck them into a bowl or arrange them on a plate or platter, drizzle some balsamic vinegar, some olive oil, and sprinkle the corn on top.

arrange the tomatoes

drizzle olive oil

add the corn



Do season with some salt and freshly ground pepper. I love flake sea salt for the crunchy texture it lends, but you will need to add that right before serving so that it doesn’t dissolve in all of the tomato juices. Another optional (but fantastic) ingredient to add is basil. Roll the leaves up and slice thin for a nice chiffonade to distribute over the salad.

flake sea salt

some salt and pepper

chiffonade the basil



And you’re pretty much done. The only thing left to do is to inhale the salad and ask yourself why you didn’t make more. I’m partial to heirloom tomatoes because they are not only sweet, but they have fantastic flavor. But any sweet tomato in season is going to be terrific in this salad. The point is to enjoy the tomatoes, enjoy the rest of summer, and get ready for autumn!

a plate full of colors and flavors

still summer here



Heirloom Tomato and Corn Salad
[print recipe]

1 lb. heirloom tomatoes, washed
1 ear corn, shucked (you will likely only need half of the corn)
balsamic vinegar
olive oil
salt (preferably a flake sea salt)
pepper, freshly ground
6-7 large fresh basil leaves

Slice the tomatoes into wedges or rounds or a large dice, taking care to remove the hard core. Place the tomatoes in a bowl or on a plate. Carefully cut the kernels of corn from the cob with a sharp knife (no crazy balancing tricks – really be careful here). Place the kernels in a bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds or blanch in boiling water and drain immediately. Drizzle a tablespoon or more of the balsamic vinegar over the tomatoes. Repeat for the olive oil. Sprinkle the corn kernels over the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Roll the basil leaves up all together like a cigar and slice cross-wise in a chiffonade. Sprinkle the basil strips over the salad and serve. Serves 4 as a side salad.

20 nibbles at “hello september”

  1. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar says:

    This salad is just plain pretty! Yum!

  2. Diane, A Broad says:

    Corn and tomatoes are my favorite late-summer things. I just want to hug that plate.

  3. Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence says:

    This looks so fresh and delicious. LOVE that second to last picture.

  4. Lisa says:

    Sure enough I bought some tomatoes last Saturday at the local Farmer’s Market. That is just what I need to do with them. I had it about a month ago and they were just beautiful and simply delicious.

  5. Toni @ Boulder Locavore says:

    I’m not so sure our leaves will last until the end of September Jen. Like all the other premature oddities of our year they seem to be starting now! I love this salad and the addition of corn. I am swimming in basil, tomatoes and corn and appreciate a new way to combine them; thank you!

  6. Anne says:

    I like to top this combo with panko crusted fried goat cheese, extra yum.

  7. Irene says:

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, and always enjoy it! I’m actually your neighbor (in Rollinsville), and I am frequently smiling at similarities in the way we think (including considering September the “month of awesome” and a deep appreciation of autumn.
    I finally had to stop lurking and post a reply when we made practically the same salad on the same day! Ours had feta cheese and a basil/olive puree — but how can you go wrong with heirloom tomatoes? Lovely lunch outside, following our foraging day in Boulder and Denver — we always buy two bushels of green chiles at the Chile Guys at 55th and Federal.
    Tonight: pizza on the grill (if the wind subsides enough to make it safe — we don’t have renewed fire restrictions again like you do).

  8. Amanda says:

    Oh yum! And I love your blog name – I agree!

  9. Eileen says:

    Corn, tomatoes, and basil are the perfect combination! I love how simple and perfect this salad is. :)

  10. Margie says:

    you had me with the dog, and then came those tomatoes…

    Rest? I’m sure you never rest, you are forever blessing us with your awesomeness, for which I am personally grateful. :)

  11. Pam says:

    All I can say is YUM.

  12. swati says:

    love the clicks! beautiful looking tomatoes, bet they must taste great too, nice recipe.

  13. JulieT says:

    Yeah finally Heirloom tomatoes that don’t taste like they’ve been in transit for a month! Before the last of the western slope peaches are gone you ought to give us one more recipe. Please!? I made some jam but I was too generous and it is gone-gifted or consumed. This years’ crop also yielded the best tasting peach pie I’ve ever made. It is hard to go wrong with Palisade peaches:)

  14. Jill says:

    Welcome home….the homestead looks beautiful! Just love those heirlooms…aren’t they gorgeous, and the colors!!!!!

  15. Jessie says:

    Simple and lovely. Love the picture. :)

  16. Tiff says:

    Awesome & simple recipe! Thanks so much for sharing. Genius, as usual.

  17. TJ says:

    I find myself coming back to your blog time after time…. i think I’m addicted to your blog as I’m addicted to kimchi and rice (globalized Korean guy). Reading your blogs is so very therapeutic and enjoyable!

    Your blog about the month of September transported me back to New England and the time my friend (Tanwei) I went to Virginia two years ago. That’s when we had lunch with your parents and your awesome blog! Thank you!! (You inspired me to start my own food/music blog. will launch in October). The tomato salad looks divine!

  18. Mrs Ergül says:

    What gorgeous tomatoes!!! I’m dying with envy here!!!

  19. jenyu says:

    Katrina – I know! I love simple things (especially in summer!!)

    Diane – me too :)

    Brandon – thanks, hon xo

    Lisa – I can make that for you anytime (in summer).

    Toni – the leaves seem to be a week early around the state.

    Anne – oh geeeeeeeez!! Now THAT is a great idea!

    Irene – hi neighbor! Yeah, autumn comes early to those of us in the mountains and *I LOVE IT*! :)

    Amanda – thanks!

    Eileen – I know, right?! :)

    Margie – I think I’ll be able to rest in November… if I’m lucky!

    Pam – :)

    swati – thank you.

    JulieT – I’ll have one last peach recipe coming soon.

    Jill – thank you! I love heirlooms for the flavors as much as for the gorgeous colors – hee hee!

    Jessie – thanks!

    Tiff – aww, it’s just what sounds good in the markets :)

    TJ – Did you meet my folks? Cool!

    Mrs. Ergül – You will have to hunt some down when you’re on travel in someplace summery!

  20. tami says:

    i’m on this late summer/denial about no more tomatoes thing, too. this salad looks amazing – i’ve made what seems like every version of tomato salad EVER in the past few weeks. xoxo

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