It is official. Chef Tess is in Summer-party mode.  Summer is about getting together and having wonderfully Fan-tabulous Wing-dings and Fun-fests with your darlings. Isn’t it? I love a good party and I love a good niblet for a good party that I can prepare enough ahead that I can still enjoy the festivities with all my sweethearts. I also think there should be some healthy goodness at a party that won’t make me feel guilty for days after I eat it. Ya know what else? I think everyday should be a party! I don’t think you need to have anyone coming to visit except your own family to celebrate and eat well. 

 So…here’s a waaawhooo of an idea. Cups. I know. You probably have cups at your party already but I’m not talking about cheesy-plastic cups…I’m talking about salad cups.  They’re easy to make and when filled with this luscious and light sweet corn, black bean and avocado salad, they’re sure to be a hit! Oh yeah, they’re just the right size for your hands so they work for an awesome appetizer or even a salad to go with a grilled main course piece of meat. Whatever you do, make a lot. They’re going to fly off the table. 

Sweet Corn, Black Bean and Avocado Salad
1 1/2 cup Honeyville Freeze Dried Sweet Corn
1 cup Honeyville Quick Cook Black Beans
2 ripe avocados, cut into 1/4 inch dices
1/4 cup  fresh lime juice
1 15 oz can fire roasted tomato dices, drained
1 green onion, chopped
2 clove pressed garlic
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
1 Tbsp Chef Tess Southwest Fajita Seasoning

Tortilla Salad Cups
6 (12 inch*) flour tortillas or Homemade 9 grain tortillas
1/4 cup garlic infused olive oil

Cup Directions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. For cups, trim tortillas to form six 6-inch squares. Cut each square into quarters for a total of twenty-four 3-inch squares. I used Homemade 9 grain tortillas.

 Make a 1-inch cut from each corner toward the center of each.

Brush both sides of each  with oil using a pastry brush. Press into bottom of a muffin pan.

Bake 8-10 minutes or until crisp. Remove from oven. *Note: you can use 24 3 inch round tortillas instead of cutting the larger tortillas into shape.
Salad Directions:
Combine black beans and corn with 3 cup boiling water in half gallon pot and cook 5 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised with how fresh the corn tastes, I dare say, “right from the farm” fresh. Freeze dried corn is remarkably sweet and delightful. Quick cook black beans, because they are already cooked and then dehydrated, take about 10 minutes to be ready to eat. I love them.

Remove from heat and allow to hydrate fully, about 10 minutes. 

Drain any water from beans and corn. Chill about 20 minutes.   Add all ingredients except avocado and chill one hour or more or up to 3 days until ready to serve. The addition of the Chef Tess Southwest Fajita seasoning gives it just the right balance of heat with citrus notes. It isn’t glorified salt. It is amazing. 

Just before serving, add avocado and toss lightly.

The late addition of the avocado will ensure the avocado doesn’t discolor. 

Dish the salad into the prepared tortilla cups just before serving and top with  a drizzle of low-fat sour cream and sharp cheese if desired. 

By the way, they also make great finger-food. 

There you go my darlings! A delicious and light lunch or appetizer for your next wing-ding this summer. Onward we go!

Always My Very Best,

Your Friend Chef Tess