Grilled peach, arugula and feta salad

13 July 2011 § 10 Comments

New Jersey (and New York) peaches are just showing up at the Farmers’ Markets, but they are still a bit too firm for my liking. So what do you do with all those hard peaches? Easy, you get grilling.

This salad is inspired by the arugula and goat cheese salad at one of my favorite restaurants, the Peekamoose in Big Indian.

The original Peekamoose version has peach, arugula, red onion, pistachios and goat cheese. It is an explosion of flavor – the pepperiness of the arugula offset by the creamy chèvre.

I could wax lyrical for ages but back to my version –  made with tough-as-boots peaches. A hard peach grills better than a soft, ripe one and it holds up better in the heat.

With handfuls of fresh arugula from our garden I got to work. First grill the peaches to give them a richer, sweeter flavor. Just brush a little olive oil on a moderate-heat grill and put the peaches on for just three minutes each side.

I know you all know how to make a good salad, which is why I’ve been very vague about quantity – it is all a handful of this and that.

However there are 2 commandments when making salad:

1) Wash and spin the lettuce bone-dry as there is nothing worse than a soggy green.

2) Shop-bought dressing is a big no-no….why would you? Answer me if you dare.
Salad Ingredients:

  • A few handfuls of arugula and red leaf lettuce (I like the combination of the 2 leaves)
  • ¼ sliced Vidalia onion
  • Handful of shelled pistachios
  • Handful (you guessed it) feta or chèvre
  • 2 peaches sliced and grilled

Wash and spin lettuce. Mix all the ingredients and dress just before serving.

Dressing ingredients:

  • 2 tbs white wine vinegar
  • 4 tbs walnut oil or olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Whisk the olive oil into the vinegar until it emulsifies. Season to taste.

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