I’m always trying to find new ways to make fresh veggie salads. After a while the basic lettuce with cucumber and tomato gets dull, so when I found a recipe for Southwest Layered Cornbread Salad, I knew I was on to something good.
It’s really a meal in itself, but also goes great on the side with any kind of grilled meat or fish – like chicken, steak or even shrimp kabobs. It tastes like a cross between a crunchy vegetable salad and a taco dip – a perfect blend of healthy and tasty!
The salad – it’s so easy! Once you’ve chopped all the veggies and pulled out the other ingredients, assembly is a snap. The first step is to mix the salsa and sour cream that you will spread over the top of the salad. After you mix this topping, set it aside.
The next step is to seed 2 tomatoes. First, cut each tomato in half. Then you remove the seeds and inner membrane from each tomato half with a spoon.
When I seeded the tomato half it looked like the tomato on the left in the photo below. Sometimes when I make this recipe I don’t worry about seeding them. Seeding the tomatoes adds a bit of moisture, but I like saving the time and effort and the seeds don’t bother me. Next, chop the tomatoes.
Combine the chopped tomatoes, chopped green pepper, onion and cilantro in a small bowl.
The recipe calls for drained canned corn, drained black beans and black-eyed peas. The final step before layering the salad is to drain these remaining vegetables. This is an easy step but an important step to do. If you forget to drain these ingredients, the salad will have too much moisture and may be “soupy”.
First, I drain the corn. If you do not want to use canned corn I suggest that you use fresh corn, particularly now while corn is in season. If you use fresh corn make sure to cut the corn off the cob and then rinse and drain it. You will also need to cook the corn in a small amount of water until it is heated through.
Drain both the black beans and the black-eyed peas in a similar manner.
There is one more ingredient to prepare – the cornbread. You can make a “scratch” recipe for cornbread, Sour Cream Cornbread, or mix up an 8-oz. package of cornbread mix if you want to make the cornbread quickly.
One last thing is to crumble the baked cornbread . After making the cornbread it does not seem right to pull and tear the cornbread into pieces but that is just exactly what you need to do.
At this point I measure out the cheese I need and get all the ingredients ready for layering the salad.
The recipe can either be layered into a big glass bowl, or you can use a 13x9-inch pan. The bowl is beautiful and fun to present at a party, but I must admit the 13x9-inch pan is easier for serving. Now onto the layering… as I put this salad together each layer provides an interesting ring of color.
The final step is to spread the sour cream and salsa mixture over the top of the salad and then top with any remaining tomato mixture for color.
No matter how you serve it, the flavor combination is sensational. “Yum! I love the creamy salsa dressing,” said my 11-year-old daughter. “I like eating it all mixed up,” said my 14-year old daughter. Like taco dip, it looks like a bit of a mess, but it tastes so great people can’t help but gobble it up.
Leftovers make a perfect and well-balanced lunch. You have bread (cornbread), protein (beans), dairy (cheese) and a host of crunchy veggies. Just add a glass of lemonade or iced tea and kick your feet up. Summer sure goes by fast!
I encourage you to try Southwest Layered Cornbread Salad and then rate and review the recipe. Do you serve fun, new summery salads that explode with color and flavor like this one? Leave a comment here and let me know.
On Thursday a recipe typically served when it is blustery cold outside is the topic. It’s a slow cooker beef recipe very similar in flavor to what Julia Child may have made. The opening of the movie, Julie & Julia, is coming soon. So, Becky will share this recipe, and provide recipe tips and insights through her "own" Julia Child story.