This Mexican corn salad (my take on Esquites) is brimming with flavor from charred fresh corn, spicy jalapeno, tart sour cream, zesty lime, and pungent Tajin seasoning; it may just become your next favorite summertime side dish. Although this recipe is not traditional, I tried to use similar ingredients that are prominent in Mexican culture. This recipe is also inspired by Elote, also known as Mexican Street Corn, which are smothered in mayo, topped with chili powder, Cotija cheese, and lime. This salad is refreshing and creamy and the smell of the charred corn reminds me of a tropical vacation. This salad is the perfect side to grilled seafood, topped on tacos, or even enjoyed as a salsa and scooped up with tortilla chips.
If this dish is native to your culture, please be kind enough to share your recipes and traditions with me in the comments. I love bringing awareness to different cultures, so I hope you enjoy this delicious dish!
Mexican Corn Salad
- 4 ears of corn, husks and silks removed
- avocado oil, for the corn
- 1 large jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped (you can use more or less depending on your spice preference)
- 1 scallion (green onion), finely chopped
- parsley or cilantro, finely diced (to taste)
- ¼ cup sour cream
- ¼ cup mayo
- juice of 1 lime
- Tajin seasoning, to taste
- cotija or feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
- Preheat the barbecue to medium-high heat. Brush each ear of corn with some avocado oil. Grill the corn for 15 to 20 minutes, turning the corn every few minutes, until charred on all sides.
- Feel free to boil the corn as well if you don’t have a barbecue or grill. Remove the corn and let it cool before cutting off the kernels.
- Remove the corn kernels from the cob: Using a Bundt pan is optional but really effective (working slow, steady, and firmly on a cutting board will also work). Working with one ear of grilled corn at a time, place the ear (vertically) in the middle of the Bundt pan and, using a sharp knife, carefully shave the kernels off the cob. The kernels will fall into the pan. Repeat with all the corn. Transfer the corn to a serving bowl.
- Add the jalapeno, scallions, and herbs to the bowl of corn. Give it a toss.
- In a separate bowl or measuring cup, add the sour cream, mayo, lime juice, and Tajin. Mix well and pour the dressing on top of the corn. Mix again and enjoy!
- If you want to crumble in some Cotija cheese (or feta) feel free to do so.