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corn, bacon and avocado salad

Wed, 13 October, 2021

⯆ JUMP TO RECIPE
Fresh sweetcorn kernels fried with smoky bacon – that’s a wonderful dish in its own right. But pile it atop fresh lettuce leaves, add half an avocado and sprinkle everything with feta and furikake – it’s a fusion salad better than a lot others.

corn bacon and avocado salad cuisinefiend.com

What makes a good salad?

A good salad needs to have four requisite elements in it, a little like weddings: something old, new and so on. In the salad world – and I’m thinking salad as a main course, not just a pile of leaves with a solitary tomato on the side – there must be something fresh, something filling, something starchy and something crunchy.

This recipe originates from my obsession with sweetcorn: this summer and autumn it seems to be the sweetest, fattest, ripest juicy kernels on impressively handsome cobs. I don’t know where my fruit and veg market traders source their corn this year, but it’s so glorious that it can’t be imported from afar.

fresh sweetcorn with bacon in salad with avocado and feta cuisinefiend.com

How to cook sweetcorn?

You can boil whole ears or steam them; they are rather decent microwaved for 3 minutes and adorable off the barbecue. But relatively recently I also discovered how easy, quick and tasty is corn off the cob, cooked as stripped kernels.

Creamed corn is a Native American staple, adopted by mainly southern and midwestern states. It should have no cream addition in it, the ‘cream’ being the milky liquid that oozes from the kernels of super-fresh cobs.

However, unless you have a field of corn outside your house, there won’t be much oozing into the dish. Hence, I add cream and sometimes a little soft blue cheese, just to be decadent.

But sweetcorn kernels can also be fried in a little butter or olive oil, making it a healthy, easy and cheap side dish, as a large ear of corn will generously serve two as a side.

fried bacon and corn with lettuce, avocado and feta cheese cuisinefiend.com

Bacon and sweetcorn go together like rock n’ roll

And as it turns out, it’s absolutely divine fried with bacon.

The serendipity of this recipe was, as often happens, finding things to put together for an end-of-week meal. Some bacon or pancetta needed to be used up, there was my glorious ear of corn, and some green leaves to serve as the bowl liner. It turned out to be a revelation.

Forget tuna and sweetcorn jacket potato topping. Give no notice ever again to sweetcorn and egg sandwich filling. Don’t add sweetcorn to chowder and never make it into fritters: sweetcorn’s best match is crispy, salty bacon. And it only takes five minutes to cook.

How to use the sweetcorn–bacon combo?

I would put it on everything if I could, since I’d discovered how fantastic it tastes. Jacket potato topping? Yes, please. On a pizza? Why not. In a sandwich? That I have not tried but I can’t say it doesn’t sound appealing.

The best idea though is this salad. It has the bacon and corn for filler and starch, the undeservedly disdained iceberg lettuce for the fresh part, plus avocado and feta cheese to make it a wholesome, satisfying dish.

The crunch is provided by furikake, Japanese seasoning of sesame seeds and seaweed flakes, which I also put on everything I can these days.

how to make bacon corn and avocado salad cuisinefiend.com

What is furikake?

Please note: you might think I’m proposing an exotic, foreign ingredient only available from Oriental supermarkets or specialist online delis at ten quid for the shipping. Not quite: the Sanchi Furikake Seasoning is also available from Ocado and Amazon and you might want to stock up on it.

If it is completely unavailable, make it yourself. A mix of plain and black sesame seeds in equal quantities needs to be tossed with some crumbled seaweed leaves, nori or kombu. You can buy them in small jars, ready-flaked, or as a snack in paper-thin sheets, e.g., from Itsu.

Bacon or pancetta?

As much as I love the exquisite, barely salty, paper-thin Italian cured pork belly, I prefer old-fashioned, gutsy bacon in this dish.

Streaky smoked, the thicker sliced the better or lardons thereof releases the nicest fat as it crispens and cooks the sweetcorn kernels to perfection.

Feta and avocado substitutes

In case you’re not keen on avocado: you can replace it with a dollop of hummus or baked sweet potato. Just add extra furikake.

And if you can’t stand feta, season some cream cheese, buffalo mozzarella or ricotta heavily with salt and black pepper, and dot all over the salad.

crispy bacon, fried corn, avocado, feta and furikake cuisinefiend.com

More main course salad recipes

Avocado and red kidney bean salad with crispy garlic and crunchy topping can be served as a starter, for lunch, brunch, for dinner and supper. A vegetarian and hearty main course salad, by all means.

Warm salads may feel more like dinner, so here’s chicken and halloumi salad with peach salsa.

And I couldn’t fail to mention my firm all-time favourite classic: chicken Caesar salad.

More bacon recipes

Bacon for breakfast, but not as you know it. This is bacon and banana – a delicious, sort of Elvis tribute dish.

Bacon as a snack, for all those who secretly sneak chunks from the frying pan whilst cooking: brown sugar bacon.

And another salad of bacon with cucumber, potato and a hefty dose of chilli. Not for the faint-hearted.

More sweetcorn recipes

Corn with feta again, this time also with chicken. It’s three good recipes in one.

Sweetcorn with rice? Absolutely. Here in a paella-style dish with chorizo sausage.

And finally, you can use the described above mix of corn and bacon to stuff into enchiladas with salsa roja and sharp Cheddar. My take on a Mexican classic.



corn, bacon and avocado salad

Servings: 2Time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 ears of corn, shucked
  • 4 rashers of streaky smoked bacon
  • 2 tbsp. finely chopped parsley
  • ½ head of iceberg lettuce
  • salt and black pepper
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil plus more for feta
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 70g (½ cup) feta cheese
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • furikake seasoning


METHOD

1. Slice the corn kernels off the cobs with a serrated knife.

2. Dice the bacon and place it in a frying pan, over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes or until it starts to crispen. Add the sweetcorn and cook stirring often for further 5 minutes until the corn is tender. Stir in the chopped parsley and season with black pepper. Set aside.

cooking corn with bacon cuisinefiend.com

3. Cut the lettuce into wedges and arrange the leaves in bowls or on plates. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil, honey and lemon juice and toss gently with your fingers to coat.

4. Season the feta with black pepper and olive oil and mash roughly with a fork.

feta dressing for salad cuisinefiend.com

5. Divide the sweetcorn and bacon mixture between the bowls. Crumble the feta mix over the sweetcorn.

6. Halve the avocado, scoop out of the skin and slice each half crosswise. Place a half in the middle of each salad bowl and sprinkle with furikake. Serve immediately.

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Hello! I'm Anna Gaze, the Cuisine Fiend. Welcome to my recipe collection.

I have lots of recipes for you to choose from: healthy or indulgent, easy or more challenging, quick or involved - but always tasty.


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