Summer Corn and Ham Salad

While my first graduate school class doesn’t start until Tuesday (eeek, so crazy!), my first day of work is tomorrow.  Back in the day, my mom would pack me my lunch and I’d be on my merry way.  Well… This whole “adult” thing requires me to plan ahead and make my own lunch (weird, right?).  Anyways, this Summertime Corn and Ham Salad recipe is something I made for my mom and I this summer and it’s absolutely delicious so I knew it’d be perfect!  It also keeps for a good couple days and acts as a good side dish, so I knew I’d get a lot of use out of it.  That’s important to me not only because I’m trying to eat healthy during the week so I can eat Chinese food guilt free on the weekends, but also because it will save me a lot of money.  This recipe is, once again, from the “Salad for Dinner” cookbook from Jeanne Kelley – You’ll be reading several of recipes from her this week because salads truly are a great lunch option during the week!  They’re light, refreshing, and can easily be prepared the day before since they aren’t very time consuming.

Summer Corn and Ham Salad: Serves 4-6


  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ears fresh corn
  • 8 ounces ham, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, diced, or 1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered (I used cherry tomatoes)
  • 1 medium zucchini, diced
  • 1 small cucumber, diced
  • 1 fresno or jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced (and for the love of god, wash your hands immediately after working with them!  I had the unpleasant experience of scratching the side of my nose and it burned for hours…)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (I used Basil as opposed to their suggestion of Thyme or Oregano, but it’s up to you!)
  • 3 cups baby arugula (Note: This is simply to “beef up” your salad.  I didn’t use lettuce and the salad was just as filling and delicious!)


  • Whisk olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, and salt in a large bowl
  • Cut the kernels from the cob (like your parents did for you when you had braces, or if your child had braces!  Oh brings back memories of middle school awkwardness.. those were the days?)
  • Add corn kernels to the bowl
  • Add ham, tomatoes, zucchini, cucumber, pepper, and herbs and mix well
  • Season salad to taste with salt and pepper

Now, I’m not a person who likes to be alone very often.  I truly am happiest when I’m surrounded by the people that I love.  But today, when I had 30 minutes to myself (with the exception of my little fluff ball of a puppy), I was pretty content with life.  The smell of basil is one of my favorite things on this earth, I knew from previous experience that this recipe would be delicious, and I was proud of myself for being healthy and planning ahead… Everything in my kitchen just felt great, even though it was just me.  And what a wonderful gift thing that can be.  Enjoy folks, this recipe’s a keeper, and happy eating!

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