Mexican Salad on Grilled Tortillas

Summertime… and the grillin’ is easy…

OK. So it’s not summertime, and I don’t think they say “grillin'” in that song, but just roll with it.

Last night I made one of our favorite meals from my bible: Jack Bishop’s A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen. It is so easy to make and ridiculously tasty. Word of advice: warm the tortillas just before you plate the salad. I learned the hard way that if you heat them way in advance, they become rubbery and difficult to cut.

Mexican Salad on Grilled Tortillas

(This recipe serves four as a main course.)

  • 2 large ears corn, husks and silk removed
  • 4 large flour tortillas (about 12 inches in diameter)
  • 1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained (I always look for low sodium or no salt added.)
  • 1 medium avocado, halved, pitted, scooped from the skin, and diced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 medium jalapeƱo chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil (I always pull out the high-end e.v. olive oil for salads.)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (If you microwave a lime for 30 or 40 seconds and then let it cool a bit, you can probably squeeze out 2 tablespoons. Try it.)
  • Salt
  • 6 cups packed stemmed arugula leaves
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes (about 1 pound), cored and cut crosswise into thin slices


  1. Light the grill. (When I’m lazy I use a grill pan on the stove– like last night.) Grill the corn, turning the ears several times, until the kernels are lightly charred, about 12 minutes. Transfer the corn to a cutting board to cool. Grill the tortillas, turning once, until streaked with grill marks, about 1 minute. Set the tortillas aside.
  2. Combine the black beans, avocado, cilantro, chile, 1 tablespoon of the oil, the lime juice, and salt to taste in a medium bowl.
  3. When the corn is cool enough to handle, cut the ears in half crosswise with a chef’s knife, stand each piece on its cut end, and slice downward several times to remove all the kernels. Add the corn kernels to the bowl with the black bean salsa and toss to combine. Adjust the seasonings, adding salt to taste.
  4. Place the arugula in a medium bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the remaining oil and sprinkle with salt to taste. Toss to coat evenly.
  5. Place the tomato slices in another medium bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and sprinkle with salt to taste.
  6. Place 1 tortilla on each dinner plate. Spoon some black bean salsa over each tortilla. Divide the arugula evenly among the tortillas, top each with several tomato slices, and serve.
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