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  • corn salad
  • audio pronunciation
  • \KORN-SAL-ud\
  • DEFINITION

noun

: any of several herbs (genus Valerianella) of the valerian family; especially : a low European herb (V. locusta syn. V. olitoria) that is widely cultivated for its leaves used in salads and as a potherb
  • EXAMPLES

"Corn salad has round leaves that form a crown of leafy green. The leaves are not as crisp as lettuce is, but they are hardy, quick-growing (ready in sixty days), and mild-flavored." — From Nancy Bubel's bulletin Grow Super Salad Greens, 1981

"In the mild West Country, I sow corn salad between late July and early September. It'll grow more or less anywhere, but if you can give it rich soil, in a well-lit position sheltered from winter winds and frosts, it'll really thrive." — From an article by Mat Coward in the Morning Star (United Kingdom), July 2, 2013

  • DID YOU KNOW?

"Corn salad" came by way of its name from its occurrence as a weed in grain fields: it's the salad green found growing among rows of corn. The plant is native to southern Europe but is widely found in both Europe and North America. "Corn salad" isn't a particularly refined name for a salad green, but the plant has other names that broaden its appeal. It's been called "lamb's lettuce" about as long as it's been called "corn salad"—that is, since the late 1500s—and in the late 1600s English speakers applied a tried-and-true technique for building a food's cachet: they started using its French name. That mâche on the fancy restaurant's menu? It's corn salad with a Continental nom de plume. Bon appétit.

Test Your Memory: What is the meaning of "chicanery," our Word of the Day from July 22? The answer is …

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