My father-in-law, Vernon Rock, who just turned 100 years old last Fourth of July, planted corn and soy beans all his life. When I was anguished by the meager returns of our risky restaurant business, I called him and we compared notes. He patiently listened to my concerns about business and when I was done complaining, he asked, “What would a farmer do if he won a million dollars?” He paused and then answered…”He’d farm it until it was all gone.” The uncertain business of restauranteering sure sounded a lot like buying the farm. You’ve simply gotta love it!
Roasted Corn and Green Bean Salad with Pine Nuts
4 medium ears of sweet corn
2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
Pinch salt and pepper
1 pound green beans, trimmed
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons roasted pine nuts
½ cup red onion, chopped
4 to 5 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Preheat the oven to 400F. Pull the husks back from the corn, but do not detach. Baste the sweet corn with Tabasco and salt and pepper and cover the corn back up inside the husks. Roast the corn on a cookie sheet in the oven for 50 to 60 minutes.
Cool in the husks, shuck the corn and cut the kernels off the cob. In a saucepan, bring salted water to a boil and simmer the green beans for 5 to 7 minutes, until they are crisp but tender. While the beans cook, heat the olive oil in a skillet over moderate heat and add the pine nuts, stirring for 3 to 5 minutes until they are golden brown. Add the roasted corn, green beans, and red onion to the skillet and toss with the nuts. Add the red wine vinegar and remove from the heat. Season with salt, pepper and Tabasco to taste. Serve hot or cold.