Cook’s Notes: This is the perfect dish for summer potlucks, when the corn is at its finest. Absolutely delicious. Adding the corn milk to the dressing is a nice touch and infuses the corn flavor throughout the dish.
8 ears fresh corn, steam-cooked in microwave
1 tablespoon kosher salt
16 oz package Italian tortellini with pesto filling (dry pasta from Trader Joe’s)
2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup cider vinegar, plus more to taste
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons dried parsley
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Husk the steamed corn. Use a corn cutter to remove corn kernels from the cob. Save the corn milk to use in the dressing.
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil, and add 1 tablespoon of the salt. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions until only 2 minutes of cooking time remain. Add the corn and cook for 2 minutes more, or until the pasta is tender but still has some bite.
Drain in a colander, shaking it to remove the excess moisture. Transfer the shells and corn to a large bowl. Add the diced red peppers.
Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the reserved corn milk, 1/2 tsp kosher salt, cider vinegar, mustard, black pepper, and spices. Gradually whisk in the oil in a slow, steady stream, until the dressing emulsifies. Pour the dressing over the warm pasta and stir gently to coat the shells.
Add more salt and pepper and another splash of vinegar, if you like.
Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour for the flavors to mellow before serving.
Source: Adapted from Stephen Cooks, who was in turn adapting a recipe from The Way We Cook, by Sheryl Julian and Julie Riven