I don’t normally do cooked fruit in savoury dishes. Pineapple on a pizza can steer clear of my plate and you can pass the apricot sauce right past me. But, as all rules are made to be broken, I am introducing my exception to the rule. Grilled peaches. Who would have thunk it?
A few weeks ago we hosted guests who arrived bearing tonnes of fresh stone fruit. Determined to waste none of it, I threw some peaches on the grill to make a sweet side. A revelation! Grilling peaches just enough to sear caramel marks on the yellow flesh enhances the sweetness and gives the fruit a little somethin-something. Add basil, a raspberry vinaigrette,walnut crumble and things start to get interesting. I hope you enjoy.
Peach and Basil Salad
4 ripe yellow peaches, pip removed and halved
1/4 cup walnuts, lightly toasted on a dry pan
1/2 400 g can lentils, drained and rinsed well
1/4 cup small basil leaves
1/2 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 good quality olive oil
salt and pepper
Heat a griddle pan on a medium heat. Brush exposed peach flesh with a little olive oil and grill face down until dark sear marks appear. Turn peaches over and grill for another 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
In a food processor, blitz toasted walnuts for a few seconds to make a rough crumble. Remove from processor and set aside in a small bowl. In a blender or vitamiser (I use a Ninja) combine all vinaigrette ingredients and blitz until smooth.
To assemble the salad, place peaches on a plate, sprinkle over rinsed lentils and walnut crumble. Scatter basil leaves and dress with a small amount of olive oil. Drizzle vinaigrette and season salad with salt and a liberal dash of black pepper.