I am the biggest fan of nectarines, peaches, apricots and plums especially the one that I get from my friends who work at the farmers market! If you live in the Bay Area - San Francisco, Oakland, Concord and etc- and visit Kashiwase Farm fruit stand before. They sell the juiciest, most scrumptious fruits ever (and organic)! I thought about working there so I can munch all day long but gave up when I found out that I have to wake up at 5 in the morning to go to the market! I am just not a morning person ;)
Although farmers markets are year round, Kashiwase Farm stopped in November and didn’t start their market until May. I miss the fruits very much so I made a visit as soon as they started up again. Since it is still early in the year so there is not much variety to choose from; however, I found 2 decent fruits. I picked up some “April Glo”, a semi-hard tart yellow nectarine, and some “Snow Angel”, a white peach variety that is so juicy that you can drink juice right from it w/ a straw!! The fruits must be eating right away; therefore, I used the nectarines and whipped up a very easy and light brunch once I got home.
Brunch started with a chicken and peppered nectarine salad and finished with custard w/nectarines and blackberries. Both very easy to prepared but soooo yummy =) The menu is inspired by a book that I purchased recently – marie claire Seasonal Kitchen by Michele Cranston. Like the title points out, it is all about cooking what is in season. There are many lovely pictures that accompanied the recipes; a must add to your kitchen bookshelves. I also recommend other books by the same author – simply gorgeous pictures and easy but delicious recipes!
The serving size that I made was for 2 people; if you have a bigger party, then just double or triple the recipes. Also, I made the custard a little thicker by adding an extra egg yolk (total 3) so if you prefer a soupier version then just use 2 egg yolks.
Although I used nectarines, you can use other fruits such as peaches, plums and apples. I think they will be equally delicious as long as they are fresh.
Chicken and peppered nectarine salad with yuzu vinegar dressing – Serves 2
2 nectarines - sliced
2tbs extra virgin olive oil
1tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 loose cups baby spinach
2 cups shredded grill chicken
yuzu vinegar dressing
4tbs light soy sauce
4tbs yuzu vinegar
Combine the olive oil and black pepper in a large bowl, add the nectarine slices and lightly toss to coat; set aside.
Stir to mix the soy sauce, tamari soy sauce and yuzu vinegar in a bowl. Add the dressing to the baby spinach, toss. Divide the spinach among the serving bowls, then add the grill chicken and peppered nectarine slices. Serve.
Custard with nectarines and blackberries - Serves 2
125 ml whipping cream
125 ml milk
½ vanilla bean pod, split and seeded
3 egg yolks
3tbs caster sugar
½ cup blackberries
2 nectarines, sliced
2tbs caster sugar
To make the custard:
Pour the milk and cream into a saucepan. Using the tip of a small sharp knife; split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the seeds and add it to the milk mixture. Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture just to simmer then remove it from the heat.
In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until pale and creamy. Whisk a little of the warm milk mixture into the eggs, whisk to combine. Add the remaining liquid, remove the vanilla bean and whisk until completely combined.
Return the custard mixture to a clean saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the custard thickens and coats the back of the spoon. If a line remains after you have dragged your finger across the spoon, the custard is ready. Remove from heat, place pan in a cold water bath, continue to whisk until it has slightly cooled. If serving the custard cold, allow to cool completely before covering and chilling in the refrigerator,
Just before serving, prepare the fruits. Place the sugar and water in a frying pan, heat over low heat, swirling the mixture a little so that the sugar dissolves. Add the nectarine slices, swirl once, then cook over low heat for 4 minutes. Add the blackberries. Swirl a few more times until all the blackberries are glossy. Remove from the heat and divide among serving plates. Serve with the custard.
農夫市場常年開放﹐可KF卻只在五月至十一月這段時間營業。所以我有好些時候沒吃到好吃的水果了。實在想死那味道了﹗因為想常吃到這些美味的水果﹐我想過像朋友一樣去那裡打工呢。可得知要凌晨五點就要起床我就打消這念頭了。我還是乖乖的做一名顧客好了--__-- 過去這個週末朋友跟我說要開業了﹐星期六迫不及待的就往市場衝了。雖然果季還早﹐我還是找到兩個不錯的水果品種。一個取名“April Glo”的油桃及取名“Snow Angel”的水蜜桃。說到這個水蜜桃﹐咬下去那個汁會狂噴的。真的是名符其實的“水”蜜桃^o^ 真的好好吃噢~
回到家﹐我就立刻用油桃做了一個簡單的沙拉及甜點做brunch。本來是連水蜜桃也用來做菜﹐但是肉質實在太嫩了只宜做飯後果。我最近愛用水果來做料理多少是受了Michele Cranston的marie claire Seasonal Kitchen一書的啟發。書裡提倡多用當季的蔬果海鮮做料理﹐新鮮又美味。Michele Cranston是法國版的marie claire烹飪雜誌總編﹐也是有名的food stylist和作家。除了上述的一書﹐
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