In August when the summer harvest is near its peak, there is a flood of euphoria and panic all at once as seasonal bounty hunters scramble to make the most of the fleeting feast. If you've joined the Canvolution and still have a bumper crop on your kitchen counter, try stuffing a little bit of summer into some more of summer with these corn salad–stuffed tomatoes. Portly heirlooms make the perfect vessel, but if you've got Romas or plums out the wazoo, they are as effective.
The corn salad can be cooled or stuffed into the tomatoes warm, straight from the saute pan. These are a nice alternative to another green-salad side dish but are filling as a meal with a loaf of crusty bread.
If you're a vegetarian or family or friends are, cook the bacon ahead and stir it into half of the corn, leaving the other half meat-free. The goat cheese–buttermilk dressing stands on its own.
- 4 jumbo heirloom or beefsteak-type tomatoes, or 6 to 8 plum or Roma tomatoes
- 4 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 5 ears corn, shucked and kernels cut from cob (4 cups of kernels)
- 2 jalapeños, stemmed and chopped
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1/4 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
- 4 scallions, chopped
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 4 ounces soft plain goat cheese
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
Core the tomatoes and cut a wide opening in the middle from the core. For plum or Romas, cut the tomatoes lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Set the tomatoes aside.
Add the bacon to a hot sauté pan over medium heat. Render until crisp, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Pour the bacon fat from the sauté pan and wipe it clean (unless you prefer sautéing in the bacon grease).
Add the oil to the same pan and return to medium heat. Put the corn kernels, jalapeños, and garlic in the pan and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes.
While the corn cooks, combine the buttermilk and goat cheese in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
Transfer the corn mixture to a large mixing bowl and add the buttermilk dressing, stirring to coat all the ingredients. Add the cilantro and scallions and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon the corn salad into the tomatoes. Serve immediately. If serving later, let the corn salad chill and stuff the tomatoes just before serving.