Summer Corn Salad // (vegan, gluten-free)
by Allison Rasche contribution by Paula Sturm, RDN, FMN, CFSP
We are back with our next color in our rainbow series, yellow!! For yellow we are doing a special feature on the sometimes controversial, but old classic, corn.
Corn is packed with B vitamins, including B3 and B6, as well as other cartenoids that function often as antioxidants and promote healthy gene expression. Corn is also packed with soluble and insoluble fiber that increases digestive health. This soluble fiber found in corn is also linked to overall cardiovascular health and lowering LDL cholesterol.
Bell peppers, in addition, are packed with vitamin C, B6, B2, B3, and A. In addition, they are also packed with a multitude of antioxidants, varying based on the color of the bell pepper. These antioxidants have been correlated with a decrease in occurrence of cardiovascular disease, obesity, and increased regulation of blood sugar.
Fresh corn can, in fact, be very nourishing. However, you really want to make sure you choose organic corn, ALWAYS!!! This crop is subject to GMO (genetic modification) when it’s not specifically organic. The GMO discussion deserves it’s own blog post…but, for now, know GMOs have consequences to your health, none of them good. Your only way to know you are using a GMO-free product is to look for the little blue GMO-free symbol or buy organic. In order for a product to be organic they do need to meet qualifications so it’s not a useless term like the term “natural” is. Natural has no definition or specs to meet when it comes to your food so any manufacturer can use this term to give the illusion of providing a healthy product.
While we are on the subject of organic, make sure you choose organic bell peppers as well. Bell peppers are notoriously on the Dirty Dozen list put our every year by the Environmental Working Group. In their yearly Dirty Dozen list they look at the 12 fruits and vegetables that contain the most pesticide/herbicide residue. This is a great list to use if you are on a budget but still want to choose the cleanest foods possible. By choosing the foods on this list in their organic form helps you save money and preserve the health of you and your family. They also provide a Clean 15 least, which lists the 15 foods that have the least pesticide/herbicide residue so you can feel good choosing these foods in their un-organic forms and still know you aren’t contaminating yourself with too many unnecessary organophosphates.
Now let’s get on to the recipe!!
2 cups frozen thawed corn kernels
1 tbsp chives, chopped
¼ cup red onion, chopped
1 cup roasted bell peppers, chopped
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup maple syrup
½ tsp red pepper flakes
salt and pepper, to taste
Combine corn, chives, red onion, and roasted bell pepper in a large bowl.
In a separate bowl, combine apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper.
Stir dressing into corn salad until evenly coated, and then enjoy!