image: flickr-Olga Massov
Summer, if it's done right, is alternating bouts of heating up and cooling down; and being so busy having fun that you've barely got time to splash water on your face. Summer is also about gorging yourself on the juiciest fruits that nature has to offer. I love the way fruit refreshes me - it's like a big drink of water and a shot of energy - combine that with a sharp cheese like feta or blue and you have a healthy and hedonistic summer snack.
watermelon and feta salad
- 8-ounce package baby arugula
- 4 cups watermelon (cubed)
- 8-ounce package feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar glaze
Spread arugula on a large platter. Scatter watermelon and feta over the arugula.
Drizzle with balsamic glaze and pepper to taste.
(If you can’t find balsamic glaze in the supermarket, you can make it by reducing 3/4 of a cup of balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan to 3 tablespoons)
fig and mozzarella salad
- 1 bowl of soft, green, salad leaves
- handful of basil
- 6 figs
- 6 medium bocconcini balls
- 6 slices of parma ham
- 6 tablespoons of oil
- 3 tablespoons of lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon of honey
This is a very visceral recipe to get your fingers into. Tear up the basil, the bocconcini and the ham. Toss these with some soft green leaves and place the cut, splayed figs on top. Combine the oil, juice and honey and drizzle over the salad. Season to taste. (When choosing your figs, you want them soft and ripe - they don't ripen after they've been picked. Fig connoisseurs look for a droplet in the small hole at the bottom of the fruit.)
caramelized pear and blue cheese salad
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 3 tablespoons of white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 pears (quartered and cored)
- 1/2 cup of walnuts
- 4-ounces arugula
- 6-ounces blue cheese (sliced)
Heat the butter, vinegar and sugar in a fry pan. Add the pear and walnuts and cook over a medium heat until the pear is soft. Place the arugula in bowls and top with the pears, walnuts and blue cheese. Spoon the pan juices over the top.
Summer fruits and salads are more refreshing than that shower after hot yoga. We'd love for you to share some of the ways you maximize the summer crop and your favourite go-to summer salad ideas in the comment section below.