This gorgeous arugula salad with juicy grilled peaches just screams summer. One of my (as well as the BF’s) favorite summer pastimes is grilling in the backyard. Grilling and summer just seem to go hand and hand, don’t they? While grilling can be a much healthier alternative to frying your foods, there can be a few downsides. Recent studies have shown that grilling meats (whether red or white meat) at high temps can create cancer-causing compounds called heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (try saying that 5 times fast!). Sounds scary right? Luckily, grilling fruit at high temps don’t create the same harmful compounds (check out this post for some safe and healthy grilling tips).
Grilling the peaches helps to caramelize it’s natural sugars so it helps bring out the natural sweetness of the fruit. I find the sweetness of the peaches perfectly balances the slight bitterness of the baby arugula. This refreshing salad is so simple to make and makes a great entree or healthy side dish. It’s sure to be the star of your next barbecue!
For the dressing:
3 tablespoons EVOO
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Pinch of sea salt
Pinch of fresh ground black pepper
For the Salad:
8 cups baby arugula
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 oz crumbled blue cheese
Preheat grill to high
Halve and pit 2 peaches and cut each one into 6 wedges
Brush peach wedges liberally with oil and grill for 30 seconds on each side
Whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sea salt and pepper to taste
Add arugula and red onion to the dressing and toss lightly to coat
Arrange grilled peaches on top of salad and sprinkle blue cheese on top.
I made this refreshing salad for the 4th of July and it was a big hit! This salad isn’t just beautifully patriotic looking, it is also super healthy and full of cancer-fighting compounds. Did you know that in addition to being an excellent source of vitamin A and C, watermelon is also rich in the phytochemical lycopene? Phytochemicals are naturally occurring plant chemicals that provide plants with their color, smell and flavor.
Lycopene is the carotenoid found in watermelon that is responsible for it’s beautiful rich red color. And while most people may think of tomatoes when they hear the word lycopene, watermelon actually contains more than tomatoes with about 15-20 mg of lycopene per every two cup serving. Yay watermelon! Watermelon isn’t the only star of this salad though. The blueberries also lend a healthy helping hand as they are rich in fiber, vitamins and several antioxidants. In addition, they contain phytochemicals called anthocyanins, which give these berries their vibrant blue color.
What’s also so great about this fruit salad is that since the lycopene in watermelon is fat-soluble, the addition of the olive oil helps to improve it’s absorption since it contains lots of healthy fats. Healthy AND delicious!
8 cups (about 1/4 of a medium sized watermelon) seedless watermelon, chopped into ~1 inch cubes
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
-In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt.
-Add the watermelon cubes, blueberries, mint and feta cheese to the bowl and gently toss to coat.
-Garnish with additional mint leaves