Refreshing Summer Salads

Yeah, it’s blue bag day!!! If you are not familiar with Nutrition Know How, blue bag day is the day that I get the CSA bag from one of my fellow bloggers and make the trip to Wenninghoff’s to pick up my bag of goodies to try out some new recipes using the locally grown produce available that week. As you can see from the picture I was gifted with sweet corn, peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and an onion. What to do?

The first thing I decided was that I would not be heating up the house. Because if you live anywhere near where we are you probably are avoiding heating up the kitchen to make hot meals thanks to the high temperatures that we are experiencing. So this week with my CSA bag of goodies, I decided to concentrate on a couple of salads that could be paired with some fresh fruit and a tall glass of iced tea.

My first salad paired bulgur wheat with many items from my blue bag. Tabbouleh, classified as a Middle Eastern chilled salad in which bulgur wheat  is mixed with chopped tomatoes, onion, parsley, mint, olive oil and lemon juice. Bulgur wheat consists of wheat kernels that have been steamed, dried and crushed. It has a tender chewy texture and comes in coarse, medium and fine grinds. Not only is it delicious in salads, but also makes an excellent pilaf or being paired in meat and vegetable dishes. It is also a great way to add some fiber to your diet.

tabouli ingredients tabouli salad

Tabbouleh Salad

  • 1 lb. fine bulgur wheat
  • 2 fresh tomatoes
  • 1 cucumber
  • 2 bunches green onions
  • 1 green pepper
  • 2 bunches parsley
  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 2 cups lemon juice (yes, 2 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Rinse tabbouleh (fine bulgur wheat) with cold water. Drain. Chop tomatoes, cucumber, onion (green part, too), pepper and parsley as fine as possible. Mix oil, lemon juice and salt. Combine all ingredients and refrigerate at least 8 hours before serving. Serve 12.

Growing up my Grandparents, Mother, Aunt, cousins and siblings would spend what seemed like an entire day picking, cleaning, blanching and freezing corn from the farm fields that surrounded the family home. There may have been complaints while the hard work was being done, but not a one of us ever complained in the middle of winter when we were around the dinner table enjoying the fruits of our labor. So this second dish came from a recipe that sprang from that time of fresh corn and tomatoes. We have always just called it Speckled Corn Salad.

corn salad ingredients corn salad

Speckled Corn Salad

  • 6 cups whole kernel corn
  • 3 pounds fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 large green bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • Sugar to taste

Combine the corn, tomatoes, green peppers, onions and celery in a large bowl. Combine the vinegar, oil, salt, pepper, dry mustard, and sugar in a small bowl and mix well. Pour over vegetable mixture and mix gently. Refrigerate, covered, for several hours before serving. Yield: 8-10 servings.


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