Grilled Peach Salad with Cashew Herb Cheese

Grilled Peach Salad

If it’s one nut that really impresses me, it’s the cashew. Rich in antioxidants, healthy fats, and minerals, it’s one of the most versatile ingredients to cook with. From cashew sour cream to cashew frosting, the possibilities are endless!

They might not be able to touch the real thing in some cases, for example grilled peach crostinis with goat cheese and mascarpone. If you can get past the white balance issues in the pictures then I promise you that is one stellar appetizer.

But for the sake of health, personal preferences, or allergies, cashews make a fantastic stand-in for dairy. Grilled Peach Salad

The only tool you need to whip up cashew cheese is a food processor or a blender. I personally haven’t tried it with a blender but I can imagine the Vitamix does a great job making smooth cashew nacho cheese. Mmmm…that’s next on my list! Just as soon as I can muster up the courage to drop $600 on a blender.

I used a cheap little processor (prior to my upgrade) for my nut cheese and it worked great. The idea is to leave it a little on the thick side so that it’s kind of like a medallion in the center of your salad.

Cashew Herb Cheese

Just a squeeze of tart lemon juice and fresh herbs give it enough flavor to stand out and compliment the juicy grilled peaches.

By the way, have you noticed some bloggers are already posting pumpkin recipes? Um hello, it’s August. There is still a TON of summer produce to be had. Like peaches.

Grilled Peach Salad

Okay, so maybe some part of me is dreaming about sweaters and pumpkin too. Why do we do this to ourselves? We’re supposed to be living in the moment, right? I suppose in the world of food blogging, that’s kind of a lost cause. You always have to think about what’s next so you can be ahead of the game.

Well, for now, I’m going to stop and savor what’s left of the long sunny days and the fresh produce. Because before we know it, we’ll be shivering, wishing for a hot day and a big summer salad!

Grilled Peach Salad

Grilled Peach Salad with Cashew Herb Cheese

Yield: 2 salads

Ingredients

3 cups mixed greens

1 cup spinach

2 peaches, halved and sliced

1/2 cup roasted almonds

balsamic vinaigrette

Cashew Herb Cheese

1 cup raw cashews soaked for at least eight hours

juice of one lemon

salt to taste

fresh herbs (basil, oregano and thyme)

Instructions

  1. To make cashew cheese, drain the soaked cashews (reserving water) and transfer them to a food processor. Add juice of one lemon and pulse until a thick puree forms.
  2. Add as much water as needed to achieve a thick, smooth texture. Toss in the fresh herbs and salt and pulse to combine. Taste test the cheese and add more salt as needed. You can also make it ahead of time and refrigerate it for later.
  3. Next, heat a grill pan over medium heat and brush with oil (I used sunflower). Arrange the slices on their sides and cook for 5 minutes then flip them to the other side to cook for another five minutes.
  4. Arrange the mixed greens and spinach on a plate, top with grilled peaches and roasted almonds and then a dollop of cashew cheese in the center. Serve with your favorite balsamic vinaigrette (honey or agave flavored works great) and enjoy!
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Grilled Peach Salad