With the month of August hot on our heels and September approaching at full speed, I’m still not ready to let go of summer. My days have been relatively schedule-free for the last two months (hence my blog posts have been fewer and far between), and even though we’ve had some hot and steamy weather in Dubai, I’ve loved every minute spent with family and friends. Summer 2016, you had me at hello…
With lush summer fruits arriving in abundance from places like Spain, Lebanon and Turkey this season, I had somewhat of a revelation when I bit into a perfectly ripe peach that actually tasted like a peach. Far from the bland, gritty, out-of-season fruit you find during the cooler months, these golden-fleshed beauties are sweet, juicy and full of concentrated flavor. We’ve been eating them like crazy in our house in just about everything from crêpes and yogurt, to hot steel-cut oats and tarts filled with crème patissière.
Since I have a natural tendency to add a touch of sweetness into savory dishes, combining oven-roasted peaches and plump, succulent tomatoes in a summery salad seemed like a smart thing to do! Warm goat cheese on toasted baguette and a honey Dijon vinaigrette balance out the flavors perfectly. It’s really easy and fabulously delicious.
You can use raw peaches, tomatoes and un-baked goat’s cheese if you want to ditch the roasting process entirely. The flavors will obviously differ, but the salad will still taste great if your key ingredients are packed with flavor.
Roasted Peach and Goat’s Cheese Salad (Serves 2)
- 2 ripe peaches
- 10 ripe vine cherry tomatoes
- 1 log of goat’s cheese (preferably with a rind)
- 3 heads of baby gem lettuce or the equivalent in wild arugula
- Pinch of sugar
- 1 teaspoon Balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 and ½ tablespoons of honey
- 1 French baguette
- extra olive oil for drizzling on the peaches and tomatoes
- sea salt
Roasting and Baking:
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C (400 F).
Cut the peaches in half, discard the pit. Rub the peaches with a little olive oil, sprinkle the cut side with a pinch of granulated sugar. Drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil, and place on the baking tray with the peaches (cut side down). Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 min or until browned and soft.
Cut 4 slices from the baguette. Cut 8 rounds of goat’s cheese, place on the baguette and drop into the oven for 10-15 minutes until warm and lightly browned on top. You can increase the baking time slightly if you would like a crunchier baguette.
For the Dressing:
Whisk together Dijon mustard and honey till smooth and combined, add olive oil and balsamic vinegar, mix well until the sauce is thick and emulsified.
Divide the lettuce or arugula into two separate bowls, drizzle with the dressing and season with a bit of sea salt. Scatter the peaches and tomatoes around the lettuce, and top with the goat’cheese baguette. The peaches and tomatoes can be served either warm or at room temperature depending on your preference.
Fresh, light, and fabulous – enjoy every bite!