Click here to view recipe.
Just the other day I started looking through my thousands of recipes organized on my computer…I was hunting for a different salad to prepare with grilled chicken. Something other than the usual lettuce salad, perhaps one that didn’t center on my beloved combination of quinoa or grains and protein…and I happened upon this recipe that I used to make for many catering events.
Liquid smoke isn’t something I particularly like or use very often but in this salad it adds an interesting dimension. This is a really filling, delicious salad – and different than what most folks prepare. Plus it’s easy enough that I can purchase the ingredients way ahead of time and even make the salad and dressing separately a couple days prior to serving – and it still tastes great.
I used to literally make vats and vats of this black-eyed-pea salad – enough for an army. Today I prepare just enough for six people. It is kind of fun to make a smaller amount – it feels more intimate. And leftovers are great (though you might need to drain off some of the liquid). I am making this in the spring before corn is at the markets, but at the peak of summer when corn is fresh, I often grill extra ears for dinner and just repurpose them in this simple, bean-based dish.
Black-Eyed Pea and Corn Salad
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 1 dash liquid smoke
- 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 3/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne or to taste
- 1-15 oz can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed (or 1 ½ cups freshly cooked black eyed peas)
- 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels (if frozen, defrost first)
- 3/4 cup celery (1-2 stalks, finely diced)
- ½ large red pepper (1/2 large, diced ¼ inch)
- 1/4 large white skinned onion (1/4 inch dice)
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro (chopped)
Shake all ingredients together in a jar – this can be made a few days ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator.
Combine all salad ingredients. Add dressing and stir well so everything is evenly coated. Add the cilantro just before serving so it doesn’t turn brown.
This is a terrific side dish for grilled chicken, fish or mushrooms. I like to let it sit at room temperature after it is ready for at least 20 minutes so the flavors meld.