During the summer I pretty much live off salad. Well okay, dessert and salad. Okay, okay – gin and tonic, dessert and salad.
It’s usually too warm here in Maryland for me to have the desire to either prepare or eat hot food. So allow me to introduce my new favourite salad. I love it so much I don’t even mind facing my fear of peach fuzz (I know, I’m a bit odd).
I like mine with some torn up milky mozzarella or creamy ricotta but Mr Colonial Cravings favours a crumbling of Roquefort and some salty prosciutto. Either way, the flavours in this get along so incredibly well I’ve been eating it by the bucket load! Who knew garlic and peaches would work so well together? It’s so fragrant and pretty, I get a little bit excited when I know that we’re having this for dinner, and I’m the one that will be making it! It’s also a great way to keep my triffid of a basil plant regularly pruned.
Baby spinach or mixed salad leaves
1 large or 2 small avocados
cheese of your choosing
1 big handful basil leaves
1/2 small clove of garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Wash the peaches and slice them into about eight (depending on how large they are). Pre-heat a griddle pan and very lightly oil the fruit, just enough to stop them from sticking to the pan. Carefully lay the peach slices on the pan and let them char a little for a minute or two before turning them over to char the other cut side. Once they have developed lovely charred stripes you can set them aside to cool a bit.
For the dressing you need to either put all of its ingredients in a small blender/food processor and blitz the life out of it or you can crush the garlic and very finely chop the basil before combining them with the oil, vinegar and seasoning.
Toss the salad leaves in a little of the dressing (but not all of it) and put them in a serving bowl. Arrange the peaches over these. Peel and slice the avocado and arrange this in the bowl too. Next crumble or tear the cheese of your choice and toss that into the bowl along with the prosciutto if you’re using it. Lastly drizzle over the remaining dressing and serve.