Summertime is the perfect season to enjoy fresh fruits in their purest form. The weather is much too hot for lengthy baking. Simple and refreshing recipes for the hot afternoon always catch my eye.
Friendly City has fresh plums and peaches this week. When I walked inside the store, the sweet fruits immediately caught my attention. I couldn’t help but smiling because plums and peaches are infinitely sweeter and tastier in-season.
A great way to serve fresh fruit is to pair it with a sharply flavored cheese. The acidity of the fruit complements the heaviness of the cheese. Friendly City has an amazing variety of locally-sourced cheeses such as feta, sharp white cheddar, muenster, mozzarella, and pepper jack. Just like with fresh fruit, local cheeses have an equally unique taste compared to commercial cheeses. This can be explained due to local weather and soil conditions that affect the cow’s feed quality and thus the taste of the cheese.
I arranged a beautiful plate of soft Havarti cheese, fresh basil, and ripe plums and peaches. Like a Caprese salad that includes mozzarella, fresh basil, and sliced tomatoes, the combination of fruit and cheese includes similar flavors that complement each other perfectly! I served this as an appetizer, and the response was overwhelmingly positive. I will definitely be serving this recipe to friends and families again this summer.
Slice ripe peaches and plums. Arrange with sliced soft Havarti cheese and fresh basil leaves. Drizzle with olive oil, and top with a sprinkle of sea salt and a few turns of ground black pepper.
Good Luck, and Happy Cooking!
By Madeleine Wirth / Guest Blogger
Madeleine is a senior at James Madison University, studying to be a registered dietitian. She loves exploring recipes with fresh and nutritious ingredients. As a native to the Shenandoah Valley, she passionately supports the local food economy in Harrisonburg!