Monday, 30 July 2012

a salad of peaches and grilled avocado

a salad of peaches and grilled avocado
there are some fruits that benefit from a little heat – brief moments on the grill, roasting in the oven or a gentle simmer. the heat coaxes their subtle flavours like those of apricots. then there are others like peaches (yellow and white flesh alike) whose honey-scented sweetness seduces you. a little char from the grill or a roast that caramelises the corners ups the ante but in summer i like these stone fruits just as they are.

when i am not too busy eating them leaning over the kitchen sink with their juices running down my arms i toss slices of them in a salad. the aniseed like basil refreshes them. a bed of baby spinach brings out their pink and yellow tones. thick chunks of grilled avocado are a welcome addition. this is a salad of varying degrees of slightly firm textures. i resist the temptation to add nuts only because the heat of the grill deepens the nuttiness of the avocado. it tastes curiously like pine nuts. i toss the salad in a dressing made with olive oil, pomegranate molasses and whole grain mustard.

the promise of a salad like this sometimes keeps me from eating all my peaches standing over the sink.

p.s. i found a poem by the american poet peter davison recently. it is to peaches what laurie lee’s poem apples is to apples. when you read it you’ll agree.


a mouthful of language to swallow:
stretches of beach, sweet clinches,
breaches in walls, bleached branches;
britches hauled over haunches;
hunches leeches, wrenched teachers.

what english can do: ransack
the warmth that chuckles beneath
fuzzed surfaces, smooth velvet
richness, splashy juices.
i beseech you, peach,
clench me into the sweetness
of your reaches.

{a salad of peaches and grilled avocado}

eighty grams spinach
a handful of roughly torn basil leaves
a yellow peach and a white peach
an avocado
two tablespoons olive oil
half a teaspoon wholegrain mustard
a teaspoon of pomegranate molasses
a sprinkle of coarse sea salt

wash the spinach and let it dry fully. toss the basil leaves and spinach together and put into a large bowl. slice the peaches thick enough so that they hold their own and add them to the bowl.

heat a grill pan. halve the avocado, remove its stone and release it from its skin. lay it cut side down and grill it for a minute or so, just enough to get grill lines. remove it carefully from the pan and cut it into thick chunks width wise.

whisk together the olive oil, wholegrain mustard and pomegranate molasses. drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss it very gently. one this is done add the avocado.

this serves two as a light supper, along with some crusty bread.    

No comments:

Post a Comment