Saturday, July 28, 2012

Allow Me to Evangelize

I’ve been wrapped up in my own dramas lately, and for that I can only say: Hey, it’s life.  I feel guilty because I’ve been meaning to tell you about how wonderful green peaches are.  Dammit, we’ve got to talk about them before peach season is over!

My source for the green peach revelation is Melissa Clark, whose kitchen advice should never go unheeded (though I do, of course, excuse myself from all recommendations about eating animals.  On that topic, Melissa and I respectfully disagree.).  She mentioned green peaches in her book In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite, and they popped up again in Cook This Now.  I tinkered for a while with a vegetarian version of the recipe from In the Kitchen but was never fully satisfied with it.  But the recipe in Cook This Now is perfect, absolutely perfect.  You should make it tonight.

Green Peach Salad

I’ve been evangelizing about this simple salad all summer.  Any time someone wonders aloud, “What should I make for dinner?” I shout, “Green peach salad!”  And then I describe it: sliced unripe peaches, plenty of salt, lime juice, basil, some good olive oil, and a touch of black pepper.  Oh me oh my, it is so delicious.

And that’s really all you need to know.  Make it today, make it tomorrow.  If you start to crave it regularly, I will sympathize and point you toward the peaches at the farmers’ market.

Green Peach Salad with Citrus and Basil

From Cook This Now by Melissa Clark

Serves 2

Just a quick note: 1/4 teaspoon of salt will look like way too much salt for this small salad, but the salt adds a wonderful savory depth to the dish.  It really transforms the peaches, so don’t be scared.  And be sure to use kosher salt!  I use Morton brand coarse kosher salt, and the saltiness seems just right to me here.

1 tsp. fresh lime juice (lemon is good here too)

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

A grind or two of black pepper

4 tsp. best-quality extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound of green (unripe) peaches, pitted and thinly sliced

A few leaves of fresh basil, thinly sliced

1)  Whisk together the lime juice, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Toss the peach slices with the dressing, add the basil, and toss again.  Serve immediately.  This salad also keeps well for a day or two in the fridge.  I usually bring it to room temperature again before eating.

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Whew, I feel better now that we’ve talked about green peaches.  Happy summer and happy cooking, friends!

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