Summer Peach Salad
This is what I refer to as a Flavor Bible salad which is something that happens frequently at the Macheesmo household. Usually, it means that I have one ingredient that I want to throw in a salad… say… peaches. I flip open my Flavor Bible to the peach section and pick four or five other things that go with it.
Toss them in a bowl with some dressing and it’s almost guaranteed to be delicious.
To kick this salad up a notch, I also passed on the store bought dressings and shook up some homemade lemon-tarragon dressing.
Summer Peach Salad
Yield: Serves 4 as an app.
1 large peach, pitted and diced
1/4 red onion, sliced thinly
1/2 cucumber, seeded and sliced thin
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
Arugula or a mix of greens
Handful of fresh basil
1/3 Cup oil (I like a mix of light olive oil and canola oil)
1 lemon, juice only
1/4 Cup tarragon vinegar
1 small shallot, diced
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Teaspoon kosher salt
1 Teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
1) Take your time dicing up the veggies. Slice the red onions thinly, Seed the cucumber and slice it thin. Pit the peach and roughly chop it.
2) Add greens to a large bowl and add crumbled feta. Then top with veggies and peaches. Dice basil and add to top of salad.
3) Whisk or shake dressing ingredients together.
4) Let people dress their own salad.
The veggies for this salad are nothing exotic, but all the flavors work really well together. So just go with it.
The hardest thing to dice up is actually the peach. I’ve seen people absolutely mutilate peaches when trying to get the pit out. Assuming you are working with a ripe peach, it’s a fairly straightforward operation though.
Start by finding the small crease in the top of the peach next to where the peach was connected to the tree. This crease shows you the direction that the pit is facing. If you don’t cut along the crease you’ll have a hard time getting the pit out.
Just follow the crease and run your knife all around the peach.
Then just as if you were cutting an avocado, lightly twist the two peach halves and they should easily pop apart. Once half will be ready to dice up and one half will have the pesky pit in it still.
You could use your knife to pry the pit out of the peach half, but honestly, I find it easiest just to grab the edge of it where it meets the peach skin and lightly pry it out of the peach. If your peach is ripe, it should pop right out!
Then you can just dice up the peaches. For this recipe, I recommend leaving the skin on so don’t worry about peeling them.
For the onions and cucumbers, just slice them up pretty thinly.
Add all the veggies and peaches to a large bowl with the crumbled feta and greens.
This is a very colorful and pretty salad.
As a final touch, chop up some fresh basil and sprinkle it on top of the salad. Don’t skimp on the basil either. It’s an awesome flavor when paired with the peaches.
I originally just wanted to make a lemon dressing for this salad, but it wasn’t quite flavorful enough for my liking so I added some tarragon vinegar to kick it up a notch.
If you’re a longtime Macheesmo reader, you might remember that tarragon vinegar is my secret ingredient in my house salad dressing!
This stuff is really flavorful and perfect for salad dressings.
When serving this salad up just make sure to get a bit of everything in each bowl and I recommend letting people dress their own salads.
For a salad with only a few ingredients, it has a lot of flavor and you can really taste summer in it. The peaches are obviously the star, but they have a pretty awesome supporting cast also.
Be sure to check back tomorrow for a main course for peach week. There will be pork involved. And bourbon.