A passion for peaches
Here we are of day 20 of the Whole 30 program. I must say, I’m impressed. Now I do not say that I am impressed to often when it comes to a “diet”. I’ve done my share of them, gone up and down and up and down. But I must say…..WOW! I feel like a million bucks!
The first week was awful. Did (I mention awful, terrible, horrible and awful?) My husband was amazing at putting up with me. I thought that since I ate 80/20 paleo that this full elimination of sugar, dairy and alcohol, (I was already mostly grain and legume free) wasn’t going to be a big deal. But it was. I was a mess! But after the first week things began to look up.
Now on week 3, I feel fantastic, sleep like a rock, go all day long and then sleep like a rock. Since my knee replacement in February I have really struggled with my stamina but that is a thing of the past with this Whole 30. But you know what has been the biggest unexpected gift of all? I am not ruled by food for the first time in my life. Huge.
I can be around food that isn’t on my plan and I don’t care. I don’t feel tempted or angry or anything! I just don’t want it. I really enjoy my hunger and love eating because food tastes so freaking good! Who would of thunk?? A simple peach is nirvana. And I have been having my way with them so I thought I’d share a few amazing things about peaches.
It seems I am not alone in my passion as the Chinese begun cultivating peaches from a native tree as early as 2000 BC. They have been writing poems and manuscripts about this fair fruit as far back as 1100 BC. In China, the peach tree is still honored as the “tree of life”. That would make it at least 4000 years that people have been enchanted by the peach. Wow.
Peaches are one of the fruits that you should buy organic. Their thin skins that absorb all chemicals sprayed on them have landed them on the “dirty dozen” list. (The “dirty dozen” list is the top 12 produce that should only be eaten organic due to their high levels of toxins in their conventional form)
Make sure and give them the sniff test when you are buying, if they don’t have a sweet aroma, they will surely disappoint. Do not buy refrigerated peaches, they have been robbed of their natural ripening process and will also disappoint. Buy your peaches slightly unripe and let them ripen at room temperature. If you’re in an all fire hurry, you can place them in a paper bag and it will expedite the ripening.
This salad recipe I am sharing with you is an unusual but brilliant way to serve peaches and it is a Whole 30 recipe if you omit the cheese and honey. You will wonder why you have never done this before. Don’t let the long ingredient list on this recipe daunt you. It is actually very easy to make. Enjoy the peach season! They are so much better than sugar. (Thanks to farm girl dabbles for the recipe)
Grilled peach Salad with Peach Cumin Dressing
For the grilled peaches;
2 large ripe peaches, cut in half, pits removed
1/2 large red onion, sliced into 1/4 inch rings (don’t separate the rings)
1 Tablespoon of olive oil
Fresh cracked pepper
Frist off make sure your grill is relatively clean, then lightly oil the grill before you turn it on. (Important safety tip there) Heat up your grill to a high heat. (Pre-heating the grill is important to get the grill marks on the peaches) Brush both sides of the peaches and the onion rings with olive oil, then lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place peaches cut side down on the grill for 3-5 minutes depending on the ripeness. You want some nice char marks on those jewels. Flip and grill for an additional 3-5 minutes then take off grill and let cool. At the same time, if you are good at multitasking, grill the onions the same way. Cut the peach halves into halves and the onions in half.
Set aside for the grand finale.
For the salad dressing;
1 large juicy peach, cut up
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of honey (omit on whole 30)
Zest from one lime
2 Tablespoons of fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon of cumin
1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon
Pinch of smoked paprika or ground cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper
Place everything into the blender or food processor and give it a whirl till well blended. Taste and adjust your seasonings. You can make this a day ahead and chill till you need it.
For the Salad
8 cups of mixed greens
1/4 cup of chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup of chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup of some nuts, pecans or almonds work best
1/3 cup of crumbled feta or goat cheese (omit on Whole 30)
The grand finale;
Toss the greens with the mint and cilantro and divide among 4 plates. Top each salad with 2 peach slices, some grilled onions, nuts and cheese. Serve with the dressing on the side so each person can make it as happy as they want it to. Make sure and say “Ta daaa!” when serving.