We love grilled vegetables as a side to grilled meat and fish, but sometimes a salad is just what you need (like one of these make ahead salads). Since the grill is on anyway, this grilled nectarine salad is a perfect fit for a summer meal. It’s incredibly fresh and tasty and goes really well with grilled meats such as steak, as we had here. You can also enjoy it as a light lunch. With a delicious balance of sweet nectarine, crunchy peppery arugula, goat’s cheese and pine nuts, you’ll be wanting it any time you can.
I look forward to nectarine and peach season every year, and I’ve loved introducing my son to them as well, even if I then have to clean up the mess. They make a great ingredient in cooking as well, with grilling and baking really bringing out the flavor, like in grilled peaches with mascarpone, nectarine and cherry galette or peach and pistachio tart. They’re also great in drinks like basil peach margarita and peach lassi. This grilled nectarine salad is another great way to enjoy them without too much effort.
How it’s made
This is a really quick salad to make without too many ingredients, but it all comes together and feels surprisingly complex. I think it’s the mix of textures and fact you have fruit, cheese, nuts and vegetables in there. All you do is whisk the simple dressing, some of which goes on the nectarines ahead of grilling to give them a nice balsamic undertone. Then toast the pine nuts, cut the fennel and crumble the goats cheese. All incredibly simple and quick. If you can employ someone as a grillmaster, you can have the rest done while the grilling is going on and then bring it all together to serve.
I’m actually far from in nectarine-world just now, as we are visiting friends in Malaysia enjoying local foods (like chicken satay and asam laksa), including the native fruits. However, I know I will gladly dig into more nectarines when I get back. They are such a delicious taste of summer to me. When I made this shortly before we left on our trip, we had a lovely ribeye steak from our meat box, and the lightness and flavors in this salad were a perfect accompaniment, but it would also go with other meats and fish. You probably don’t want to pair it with anything too elaborate given the mix of flavors in here, but do experiment and see what you like to enjoy it with.
The flavors of this grilled nectarine salad are incredibly tasty and fresh. They work so well together and it’s a real bowlful of summer. A delicious mix of textures, from the soft fragrant nectarine to the crunchy, peppery arugula and the little crunch of pine nuts. We will definitely be enjoying this again as the nectarine season progresses when we get back.
Grilled nectarine and arugula salad
- 2 nectarines ripe but firm
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 3 tbsp olive oil virgin or extra virgin
- 2 1/2 oz arugula 70g rocket
- 1/2 bulb fennel small
- 2 tbsp pine nuts
- 1 oz goats cheese 30g
- Carefully cut the nectarines in half and remove the stone. In a small bowl, whisk together 1tbsp of balsamic vinegar and 1tbsp of olive oil and dip the nectarines in the mixture and toss them around. Grill them for just a few minutes each side until they are lightly colored.
- Meanwhile, add the remaining vinegar and oil to the leftovers from tossing the nectarines and whisk.
- Put the arugula in a salad bowl. Thinly slice the fennel and cut larger slices in half or smaller. Add them to the arugula and mix. Drizzle over the balsamic dressing and toss well.
- Toast the pine nuts either in a dry skillet/frying pan or under the broiler/grill for a couple minutes until lightly browned. Keep an eye on them as they burn quickly. Add them to the salad.
- When cooked, cut the nectaries into slices and add to the salad. Crumble the goats cheese on top and serve.
Try these other delicious salads, perfect for summer:
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