corn salad


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

called also lamb's lettuce, mâche

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.

Word History


from its occurrence as a weed in fields of grain

First Known Use

1597, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of corn salad was in 1597


Dictionary Entries Near corn salad

Cite this Entry

“Corn salad.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2024.

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