Recipes and Food
Corn and Tomato Salsa
I first encountered Peter Rabbit and friends in high school, when I worked at the mall in a store that carried fine bath and body products. It had a line of English soaps shaped like animals: rabbits, ducks, kittens, and hedgehogs, packaged in dainty boxes decorated with fanciful watercolor illustrations of the characters that inspired them. When the store was empty, I would carefully study the soap boxes, enchanted by the artwork, and curious about the stories behind them.
Fifteen years later, while pregnant with my daughter, Sophie, I splurged on a beautiful box set stuffed with all 23 books from the world of Peter Rabbit. I read the books to her until she began to read on her own, then we read them together, sharing in the delight of being carried along on their woodland adventures. So when the first Peter Rabbit movie came out in 2018, Sophie excitedly asked me to call her friends’ moms to set up a playdate to see the movie together. I still have the photos on my phone of these giddy fourth-graders posing with the Peter Rabbit cutout in the movie theater lobby, grinning widely while pretending to bite into the giant carrot he was holding.
Today, on the cusp of middle school, Sophie is less enthusiastic about asking her 12- and 13-year-old friends to come along for the Peter Rabbit sequel, so when I asked her if she would go see it with me, she enthusiastically agreed.
Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway was just as much fun as the first movie, with lots of thrilling action scenes and silly jokes sure to elicit some loud guffaws (speaking from experience here). It’s not quite Beatrix Potter’s Peter Rabbit, but that’s okay, because the movie is still good clean fun. It knows it’s not traditional, it doesn’t take itself seriously, and it even pokes fun at itself.
Inspired by the farmers market scenes and Thomas’ garden in the movie, Sophie and I got up bright and early last weekend to shop at our local farmers market. We picked up tortilla chips, organic corn, tomatoes, limes, onions, and cilantro and made up our own recipe for corn and tomato salsa. It came out pretty good, if I do say so myself!
Corn and Tomato Salsa
- 1 small red onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Juice of 2 limes
- 4 medium-size tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup cooked corn kernels (about 2 husks of corn)
- ½ cup chopped cilantro
1. Place the chopped onion in a large bowl and sprinkle with salt. Pour the lime juice over the onions and set aside for 15 minutes.
2. Add the tomatoes, corn, and cilantro to the onion mixture and gently fold the ingredients together.
3. Serve with tortilla chips on the side.
As I munched on the chips and salsa that Sophie and I made together, I thought back to the time so many years ago when I first saw those Peter Rabbit soaps, and how I was immediately drawn to these characters that have given my daughter and me so much happiness over the years. I'd hoped that Sophie would hand down the Peter Rabbit box set to her own children, but alas, the ninth book in the series, The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck, has disappeared (Jemima is probably off looking for a dry nesting-place to hatch her eggs). However, the corn and tomato salsa is now a part of our family's recipe collection for Sophie to hand down to her own children. I just hope I'm around long enough to read the books to my grandchildren, just as I did to Sophie when she was a baby, and maybe even longer so I can make up recipes with them, too.
I hope you enjoy the movie with your children — or grandchildren — and then invest some time to make memories in the kitchen for this refreshing and delicious movie-inspired recipe.
We interviewed Will Gluck, the director of Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway. He shared adorable behind-the-scenes stories about making the movie. Read about them here.