Saturday, July 26, 2014

Counting My Blessings: Salads with Blueberries, Peaches

I will often begin dinners, not with the holding of hands and the saying of grace, asking the deity to please sprinkle holy fairy dust over the bounty of which we are about to partake, but with an apology. As in, "Please forgive me, my dear family members for whose digestive systems, indeed whose entire well-being, I am responsible for from now until I shuffle off this mortal coil, for I have no roughage or greenery to offer and thus have failed in my duties."

Or something to that effect.

A proper meal.

The guilt induced by these failings haunts me, brought up as I was was by the duty, indeed the holy orders, to build a pyramid based on the trinity of protein, carb and veg. Which means that often you will find me, while the casserole is baking or the chicken is roasting or the pasta is boiling, head down in the vegetable bin searching for anything that might allow me to be redeemed in the eyes of my family.

Peaches add a je ne sais quoi quality.

Recently that redemption has come in the form of little green hallocks of fruit brought home from the farmers' market, specifically some blueberries and peaches, that, when combined with leftover cabbage from tacos the night before or extra leaves not used in an escarole salad, gave me the benediction I was seeking.

Peach and Pepper Slaw with Mint

1/4 head green cabbage, sliced thin
1/4 head red cabbage, sliced thin
1/2 red onion, sliced thin
1/4 c. Mama Lil’s mixed peppers, chopped
2 medium-sized ripe peaches, chopped in 1/2” cubes
2 Tbsp. chopped mint
1/2 c. olive oil
1 tsp. salt or to taste

Combine all ingredients in salad bowl and toss.

* * *

Blueberry, Cherry Tomato and Escarole Salad

1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 pint blueberries
1/4 finely sliced onion
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
Several leaves of escarole, roughly torn
Salt to taste

Put cherry tomatoes, blueberries, onion and vinegar in a zip-lock bag. Shake to combine and place bag in refrigerator for at least 30 min. to marinate. Remove from refrigerator and empty contents into salad bowl with torn escarole. Toss to combine. Adjust salt to taste and serve.

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