This dish screams summer to me – from the grilled fresh vegetables straight from a local farm stand to the creamy, rich burrata cheese, herby vinaigrette and tender grilled chicken thighs seasoned simply with salt and pepper.
The chicken can easily be either omitted entirely or substituted with your fish of choice though I love the extra addition of protein it adds to this salad.
Summer may be my favorite season for produce with fresh sweet corn, juicy tomatoes and plenty of squash. I think it’s because so many of the vegetables stand up well to grilling; the method enhances the natural flavors while adding a slightly smoky taste. Summer vegetables also remind me of growing up in New Jersey – named the “garden state” for a reason. My town had an abundance of farms and farm stands to purchase the ripe produce – word would travel fast as to when the corn was best and tomatoes at their peak.
6ouncesbaby green summer squash,halved (or 1 large zucchini squash, halved lengthwise)
2ears of corn
1cuphalved Heirloom cherry tomato
For the dressing:
In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, basil and garlic until emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
For the vegetables and assembly:
Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Add chicken to the grill and cook through, about 4 minutes on each side. Remove and set aside. Let rest for at least 5 minutes. Chop the chicken thighs and set aside.
Arrange summer squash cut side down on aluminum foil and add to the grill (so they don’t fall through the grate) then add corn to the grill and close, cooking undisturbed for 4 minutes. Turn and continue to grill until the vegetables are slightly charred, about an additional 4 minutes. Remove and set aside! Use a knife to cut the corn kernels off the cob.
Add the arugula to a large salad bowl with the corn kernels, squash, tomatoes and the chicken. Drizzle with ¼ cup of the basil vinaigrette, adding more if needed, tossing to combine. Top with pieces of the burrata and serve.
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