Quick: name 3 side dishes for your next barbeque. I bet fruit salad was on that list! Put down that recipe for Waldorf salad and get creative with new fruit salad ideas.
A fave d’lish trick is to mix freshly squeezed lemon juice with a local honey; then add in some chopped freshly picked mint from the garden. Toss this with juicy peach wedges or halved apricots – yum!
Try grilling thick slices of pineapple and then sprinkling them with a touch of ground chipotle chili, a touch of lime juice, and a quick scatter in some chopped cilantro. My mouth is watering just thinking about this one.
Icy cold watermelon chunks are terrific when tossed with feta cheese, chopped fresh basil, kalamata olives and a light drizzle of extra virgin olive oil! Now that’s a NEW salad everyone will love!
So think outside of the box and try a new spin on fruit salad…and don’t forget to tell me how you like your refreshing summer side! – Kathy
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.
Succulent Summer Stone Fruits with Lavender- Lemon Honey Syrup
Makes about 6 servings
Lavander Lemon Honey Syrup
1/2 cup high quality local honey
1/2 cup water
8 ea fresh lavander flowers, unsprayed and rinsed (or 1 tablespoon dry)
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
an assortment such as the following of fresh ripe stone fruits to make about 4 cups after cutting:
-peaches, peeled, pitted and cut in wedges
-large apricots, pitted and cut in wedges
-plums, pitted and cut in wedges
-nectarines, pitted and cut in wedges
-pitted fresh cherries
Fresh lavender flowers for garnish, if desired.
To make the lavender lemon honey syrup : In a small heavy bottom sauce pan combine the honey, water and lavender flowers. Bring to a low boil over med heat – being careful that ist does not foam up. Slowly simmer for about 10 minutes or until like thin pancake syrup. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Then add lemon juice and strain. Store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. Bring to room temperature before using.
To serve: In a large bowl toss with the lavender lemon honey syrup. Garnish with fresh lavender flowers if desired.
Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.
Todd English’s Watermelon, Fennel and Black Olive Salad with Feta Cheese
One of my all-time favorite watermelon recipes is chef Todd English’s. He embellishes a melon salad with the distinctive flavors of fennel, feta and kalamata olives contrasted against the cool red-glistening fruit. The recipe was originally featured in the Star Palate cookbook, whose proceeds benefited the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Makes 8 servings
4 cups seeded watermelon chunks
1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced on a Japanese mandoline (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pitted kalamata olives
1 large red onion, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
1 bunch green onions, green part only, chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 cups crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
Put the watermelon, fennel, olives, red onion, green onion, basil leaves, and feta in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and toss well. Divide among salad plates and serve immediately.
Adapted from “Star Palate: Celebrity Cookbook for a Cure” by Tami Agassi and Kathy Casey