I love making summer salads and this last week has been no exception! Again I bought what I thought looked especially good at the market and day by day when it came to meal time, decided what to do with it all. As well as fruit and vegetables I always take home one of our French buckwheat loaves of bread and, when I remember to get there before she sells out, another buckwheat loaf from Yeshe, The Midnight Baker. Our French one is like a rustic country loaf and Yeshe’s is a dense loaf made with buckwheat flour and lots of different seeds. We love both!! After a few days there’s often a bit left and I hate wasting them because both are so good.
My other salad was a combination of grilled fruits, prosciutto, herbs and chopped hazelnut dressing with croutons made from the buckwheat loaf from The Midnight Baker. The white peaches and nectarines came from Jason and the baby red onions from Terry Lister. I used both regular basil and I discovered that I’d planted Vietnamese basil in my garden as well. This worked particularly well with the fruit. I served this salad with a piece of seared tuna. There’s no need to be precise about quantities here.
5-6 small red onions, peeled, root end left on and quartered
2-3 white peaches, halved, stoned and cut into quarters or eighths
2-3 nectarines, halved, stoned and cut into quarters or eighths
5-6 slices of prosciutto, torn into pieces
3-4 slices of buckwheat loaf, cut into small cubes
Basil – regular and/or Vietnamese, chopped
Coriander, finely chopped
Handful of roasted hazelnuts, chopped (you can buy these from The Vanilla Man on Saturdays)
Extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
Balsamic glaze – rosemary infused (bought from Naomi of Aceto on Saturdays)
Salt and pepper
Place the red onion pieces on a tray, drizzle with a little oil and bake in a moderate oven or lidded barbecue. Season and cook till nearly soft.
Heat a little oil in a pan and cook the croutons till golden and crispy. In the same pan cook very quickly brown the pieces of prosciutto.
Drizzle the pieces of peach and nectarine with a little balsamic glaze (or use a little good quality balsamic vinegar) and grill on the barbecue or in a pan on the stove.
Make the dressing by combining the chopped hazelnuts, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper.
Assemble the salad on a platter starting with microgreens if using. Gently toss the fruit and most of the herbs together and add to the plate and scatter with the roasted red onions pieces and croutons. Top with prosciutto pieces, the rest of the herbs and spoon over the dressing.