Sweet and sour pickled fruit and garden fresh mint make this simple summer salad deliciously complex. If you're new to pickles, don't worry. If you can boil water, you can pickle peaches.
OK, so it's not quite summer yet, but with highs in the 90s and humidity at 1000 percent, it sure feels like summer has come early to Atlanta. This light summer salad is a perfect light, weeknight dish.
This summer salad is part of Peach Blueberry Week over here! I've been getting ready for my pickling demo at Freedom Farmers Market on June 27th and trying out a new pickle recipe plus a couple of ways to use it. I shared the pickled peach recipe yesterday, and I have a cocktail recipe using these same pickles coming on Friday.
You'll need a batch of my Pickled Peaches and Blueberries before you start mixing up this summer salad recipe, so before you start washing your greens, get those peaches and blueberries into some brine!
This is a great make-ahead recipe for summer picnics. If you're making this in advance, toss the veggies, cashews, and chickpeas together, but leave out the olive oil, lemon juice, and pickles until just before serving. You can combine the lemon juice and olive oil in a small jar and add it to your salad when you arrive, then top each bowl with pickled fruit.
If you made your fruit pickles already, there's no actual cooking involved in this recipe. The fruit pickles are best the day after you make them, but if you just made them, at least let them cool to room temperature before adding to your salad. If you can chill them for an hour or more before using, all the better.
Don't Fear the Peaches
Pickled fruit might sound kind of wackadoo, and I hope you'll give them a chance in this summer salad. The brine is sweet, sour, and spiced, and it combines beautifully with summery peaches and berries.
The pickles are what really give this recipe its character. Otherwise, it's quite basic. Greens, beans, onions, and a little bit of fresh mint tossed in olive oil and lemon juice. Really, it would be a great salad without the pickled fruit, but the pickles add a rich layer to this summer salad that I can't get enough of.
Summer Salad with Pickled Peaches and Blueberries
Serves 4 as a side dish, 2 as a meal
- 4 cups of baby spinach
- 4 cups of chopped or baby arugula
- 1/2 cup sweet onion, thinly sliced (about 1/2 of an onion)
- 1/2 cup roasted cashews (Unsalted is ideal, but salted is fine too.)
- 2 cups of cooked chickpeas, drained and rined (1 15 ounce can)
- 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves, lightly packed, chopped fine
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- juice of 1 fresh lemon
- about 1/2 cup Pickles Peaches and Blueberries
- Toss together all of the ingredients except for the pickles and divide between your bowls. Top each bowl with a couple of generous spoonfuls of pickled fruit just before serving. You can pass any extra pickles on the side, in case folks want more.
- If you're making this recipe ahead of time, toss in the olive oil and lemon juice just before serving instead of when you toss everything else together.