Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Ingredient Spotlight-Taco Corn and Bean Salad



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Corn is the Ingredient Spotlight over at Eat at Home today.   I have always liked the so-called Frito Corn Salad that may or may not have originated with Paula Deen, but I wanted a salad that could stand in as a meatless main dish.

I added beans for more protein and taco seasoning to “up the flavor factor”.  I reduced the amount of mayonnaise and added sour cream and cream cheese.  Since I don’t like green peppers, I used red peppers and then green onions to supply the green color.  I also added chopped ripe olives.

Canned corn, cooked, frozen corn, or fresh corn, cooked and removed from the cob can be used for this dish.  About 4 cups or frozen or fresh corn will be needed.

Use your favorite beans for this.  I like pinto or red beans, but black ones add a really nice color contrast.

I make my own taco seasoning to save money and avoid unwanted chemicals and preservatives, but a commercial packet may be used.  There are many recipes for homemade taco seasoning on the internet.  Just Google and keep trying them until you find one your family likes.

Although most recipes have the Fritos stirred into the salad, I find that they become soggy if there is any salad left over.  When I make this for eating at home I just set the crushed corn chips out in a bowl and let people top each serving.  If am taking this to a potluck, I sprinkle the crushed chips on top of the salad.  If there is any salad left over, I tip the bowl and let the corn chips fall into a shallow container.  I put them in a plastic bag and store them in the refrigerator.  When ready to use, I put them on a glass pie plate and microwave them a minute at a time until the corn chips are crisp again.

This salad is best made at least several hours ahead of serving.  I like to make mine the day before.

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Taco Corn and Bean Salad
2 cans (16 oz.) cans whole kernel corn, well drained or 4 cups cooked frozen or fresh corn kernels
1 can (16 oz.) pinto, kidney, red or black beans, well drained and rinsed
1 c. chopped red pepper
1/2 c. chopped red onion
1/3 c. sliced green onions
1 can (3.8 oz.) slice olives, well drained and halved
1 (3 oz.) pkg. low fat cream cheese, very soft
1/2 c. low fat sour cream
1/2 c. low fat mayonnaise
1 T. chili powder
1/2 T. ground cumin
1 t. salt
1 t. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 t. paprika (smoked if you have it)
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. onion powder
1/4 t. dried oregano, crushed
1/4 t. red pepper flakes (opt.)
2 c (8 oz.) shredded sharp cheddar cheese or Mexican blend
1 (10 1/2 oz.) bag Fritos, regular or Chili Cheese corn chips (I usually don’t need a whole bag)

 a large mixing bowl combine corn, beans, red pepper, red onion, green onion and olives mix well.  In a medium mixing bowl combine the very soft cream cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise.  Mix until well blend.  Add the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and red pepper flakes, if using.  Stir until spices are well combined with the cheese/cream/mayo mixture.  Spoon mixture over the corn/bean mixture and stir until everything is coated with the dressing.  Add shredded cheese and stir until well blended.  Cover tightly and refrigerate until serving time.  Just before serving, crush enough corn chips to completely cover the top of the salad.  Sprinkle corn chip on the salad.  Serves 8 to 10.


4 comments:

  1. Oooooh I think Sam will like this! I'm pinning it to try!

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  2. WOW oh WOW! I have been on a corn kick lately and would just LOOOOVE all the flavors you added to this yummy dish. My sis in love has made something similar...and oh how I LOVE those corn chips on top. I think she uses the chili flavored ones, but then you have the taco seasoning in the corn which would be wonderful. Thanks for sharing your creativity.

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  3. This looks AMAZING! I can't wait to try it out! I found you over on show off your stuff link party! I am now following you. I'd love it if you would visit me over at www.battlingthehomefront.com and become a follower!

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I love to read your comments and suggestions. Hope that you enjoyed your visit to Grandma Loy"s Kitchen.

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