The mood of this salad is best captured by Will Smith. Its seriously the thing that sprung to mind as I sat down to enjoy this fruit-centric salad. You probably don’t know this but it’s a full-on Glee episode around here… everything reminds us of a song. And one of the best things about marrying someone so close to my age is that we grew up with the same music. Any statement or phrase that reminds one of us of a song results in a [generally heinous] rendition of our own. Let’s just say, I found the right guy for me.
Moving on… it has been brought to my attention [via back-to-school ads and fall recipe teasers] that the days of summer may be waning. That kind of talk is a real of a buzz-kill here in the Pacific Northwest where summer is just hitting so I ‘m doing my best to ignore any such hints. I know the rest of the country has endured the sweltering heat and is eager to move on. I, on the other hand, am not ready for that – it’s asking too much. There is plenty of time ahead for hearty soups and for the record I refuse to discuss them until October. In the meantime, you will find me getting my fill of juicy peaches, cool refreshing watermelon, sweet mango, berries…
1 small shallot
2 cloves garlic
2 cups fresh blackberries
1/2 cup late harvest Sauvignon Blanc vinegar [or white balsamic vinegar]
2 T dark brown sugar
1 T fresh tarragon
1/4 tsp kosher salt
several turns of freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
4 [1/3 lb each] wild Alaskan salmon filets
2 – 5oz bags of mixed greens
1 small sweet Vidalia or Walla Walla onion, shaved thinly
1 ripe peach or nectarine, in 12 slices
1 pint fresh blackberries
1 pint fresh raspberries
Serves 4 as a main course.
Puree all the vinaigrette ingredients [except olive oil] until smooth. Push through a fine sieve set over a medium saucepan. Simmer on medium-low until reduced by almost half – approx 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add olive oil. Pour into container and refrigerate until completely cool, or until ready to use.
Drizzle each salmon filet with olive oil, sprinkle with salt + pepper and grill until just barely cooked through. Assemble salad on each plate beginning with salad greens, add onion, salmon and divide fruit evenly between them. Pour vinaigrette into plastic squirt bottle, squirt across each salad, and serve.