It's a Food Fiesta with Roasted Corn Salsa

When we started trying to eat locally and seasonally there were some foods it was hard to give up. In the world of December mangoes in New England, it can be confusing to figure out what foods belong in what season, and in what locale. I've accepted that I shouldn't be able to eat a banana in the mid-Atlantic, so if I find myself indulging in one, it's just that—an indulgence.

There are a few foods that were always a no brainer. In my house, tomatoes and corn always meant summer. My father has a tomato factory in the back yard, a hybrid traditional and hydroponic system that churns out an unreal number of tomatoes. So much so that in my teen years we were each (myself and my five siblings) required to eat a certain number each day.

Corn was never something grown at home (though I hope to change that in my own backyard), but a luxury picked up at a roadside farm stand on the way down to the beach. Sitting on the front porch of my parent's marsh house shucking corn and snapping green beans with my grandmother was a cherished tradition. And now I can't pass by a bin of corn or a crate of tomatoes without smiling.

Growing up tomatoes were used in everything, though most found their way into tomato sandwiches (white bread + mayo + salt and pepper + tomato). Corn was boiled, grilled, roasted, and stewed, always leading to one of the big family meals that shaped the way I think about food. These days I tend to be a little more low key, grilling my corn to serve alongside a hamburger or roasting it for some salsa. But no matter how I'm dressing it, it still only says one thing to me—summer

Roasted Corn Salsa

3 ears of corn
4 tbsps olive oil
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
3 tomatoes
1 red onion
1 jalapeño
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves
2 cloves garlic
3 limes, juiced
Salt & pepper

Shuck your corn. Rub each ear with olive oil. Mix together cayenne, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Rub each ear with the spice mix. Heat your oven to 400. Roast corn, uncovered, for 30 minutes, turning once.

When your corn is done remove from oven and set aside.

Chop your tomato, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, and garlic. Squeeze limes into the mix.

Use a sharp knife to cut the kernels of corn off the cob. Mix the corn into the rest of your salsa. Season to taste.

Chime In: How spicy to do you like your salsa?


Elena Rosemond-Hoerr is a writer and photographer and can be found on her own website,

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