Charred Corn and Date Salad with Lime Cumin Vinaigrette

Recipe & Photo by Mindy Fox

The natural sweetness of dates complements smoky charred corn, fresh chiles, and creamy cotija cheese in this colorful, vibrant summer salad. A mix of fresh herbs is nice, but you can use whatever you have in your garden or on hand.

Serves 4



  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice, plus more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot or red onion
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for grilling
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Pinch cayenne pepper


  • 4 ears corn, shucked
  • 3 Persian cucumbers or 1 English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced pitted Medjool dates
  • 5 radishes, very thinly sliced
  • 1 medium Serrano chili, thinly sliced
  • 1 Italian long sweet chili pepper, cubanelle, Anaheim, banana, or small bell pepper (any color), seeded, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup crumbled fresh cotija or feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup mixed fresh tender herb leaves, such as mint, basil, cilantro, tarragon, and/or chives, large leaves coarsely chopped
  • Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)

For vinaigrette: In a medium bowl, whisk together lime juice, shallot, and heaping 1/4 teaspoon salt. Let stand 10 minutes. Whisk in oil, cumin, and cayenne.

For salad: Prepare a grill or grill pan for medium-high heat. Brush corn with oil and grill, turning occasionally until charred and tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool slightly.

Cut kernels from corn cobs. Arrange corn, cucumber, dates, radishes, Serrano and Italian chiles in a large bowl. Top with cheese and herbs. Drizzle with vinaigrette and season to taste with flaky salt and black pepper. Adjust salt, pepper, and lime juice to taste.

Recipe & Photo by Mindy Fox

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