California Central Coast Recipes
Luscious-and FUN Grilled Nectarine Salad
This past summer it has been a fantastic season for stone-fruit! It was practically impossible to buy a lousy peach or nectarine. But what was REALLY fun, was in lieu of tomatoes which were pretty lousy again this year, we'd grill nectarine or peach halves and serve them on a bed of Spring Mix dressed lightly with a little Balsamic Vinaigrette made just for complementing this out-of sight- delicious salad-treat! (The grilling process caramelizes and magnifies the fruits' sweetness.) It made every-night seem special! And we're still grilling them nightly! They're so good, you do not need a dessert!
Even if you get slightly under-ripened fruit, because of the grilling process and the complementing vinaigrette, it still develops a wonderful flavor that you'll savor!
Preparation time: 2 minutesCooking time: 8 minutes
2 Whole Nectarines or Peaches Cut in half and the stones removed
1 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil to lightly oil the fruit halves to prevent sticking on the grill.
4 to 6 heaping cups of Spring Mix Greens
For the salad dressing
1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar
2 to 4 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive oil
1 to 3 Tablespoons Agave sweetener (in the honey aisle)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 Light your grill outside to get it hot.
2 In the meantime, rinse-off your fruit and cut in halves and remove the stones.
3 Lightly oil both sides of each halve of fruit.
4 To make the dressing,in a glass measuring cup, add the Balsamic vinegar, the olive oil to taste, the agave to taste and a little salt and pepper to taste. Do not over-salt!It will clash with the sweetness of the fruit.
5 In a large salad bowl, add the amount of Spring Mix you'd like to serve.
6 Back at the grill: Cook the "insides" of the fruit halves, first for ~ 4 minutes. The length of grilling each side will depend on the ripeness of the fruit. (The more ripe, the less grilling time.)
7 Then turn the halves over and do a quarter-turn clockwise to get a nice searing pattern. Cook for ~ two minutes. The rotate once again and cook for another 2 minutes.
8 Please remember, if you have very ripe fruit, it could only require ~ 2-4 minutes TOTAL grilling time to achieve the caramelizing flavor.
9 When done grilling, remove from grill and let cool a few minutes.
10 Back at the salad bowl, take your glass measure with the dressing and whisk quickly to redistribute the ingredients and flavors, then slowly pour over the Greens and toss well to distribute evenly. Divide the greens between the plates or bowls, then "crown" each dish with two halves, and then dribble a bit of remaining vinaigrette over the fruit and serve.
This salad is great as an appetizer or dessert salad. It can be even a main course if served with some Feta Cheese crumbled over the medley and a baguette.
Be sure to serve decent sharp knives to your diners to easily cut the fruit without mangling the greens.
A chilled robust white such as the white Rhone Sea Stone Cellars Silhouette or a Sauvignon Blanc.