Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Spicy Peach and Avocado Salad #recipe @LeslieBudewitz

LESLIE BUDEWITZ: I’m sneaking this in before the last peaches disappear from the grocer’s shelves. I found this recipe in Country Living; my only additions are the splash of red wine vinegar and the bed of greens, although I did rewrite the instructions—magazine style and space considerations aren’t always conducive to clarity!

The original recipe also called for a Fresno chile; lacking same, I subbed an Anaheim, which are readily available.

The only problem with this recipe was that Mercury was not only retrograde, but spinning like a drunken dreidel. Plans called for grilled chicken. Mr. Right discovered that we'd forgotten to refill the propane tank, which forced a change to stovetop chicken---tastier but messier. And grilling the naan directly on the stove burner tastes great, unless you leave it on a tad too long, but hey, carbon is good for us, right? Then I forgot to hold the bowl while I turned on the whizzy-uppy thing, aka the immersion blender. Dinner prep does take longer when you have to stop and wash the olive oil off the floor, change your clothes, and start the laundry.

On the upside, I can assure you this salad pairs well with grilled chicken and naan and a healthy dose of Chardonnay.

Spicy Peach and Avocado Salad

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 Anaheim or Fresno chile, thinly sliced
dash of red wine vinegar

1/4 cup pistachios, roasted
3 ripe but firm peaches, cut into wedges
2 avocados, cut into wedges
½ cup fresh mint leaves, torn if large
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
mixed greens

Roast the pistachios at 350 degrees, about 10 minutes. (Remember that all nuts will continue baking after being removed from the oven, so don’t overbake!)

Mix the dressing ingredients in a bowl with a whisk or an immersion blender. Add the sliced peaches, toss to coat, and marinade at least 15 minutes, up to an hour.

Just before serving, add the avocado and about half the mint to the peaches and toss to combine. Season to taste.

 Arrange the greens in your serving dish. Gently add the peach and avocado mixture, and garnish with the pistachios and remaining mint leaves.

Serves 6-8. Enjoy!

From the cover of TREBLE AT THE JAM FEST, Food Lovers' Village Mystery #4 (Midnight Ink, June 2017):  

Erin Murphy, manager of Murphy’s Mercantile (aka the Merc), is tuning up for Jewel Bay’s annual Jazz Festival. Between keeping the Merc’s shelves stocked with Montana’s tastiest local fare and hosting the festival’s kick-off concert, Erin has her hands full.

Discord erupts when jazz guitarist Gerry Martin is found dead on the rocks above the Jewel River. The one-time international sensation had fallen out of sync with festival organizers, students, and performers. Was his death an accident?or did someone even the score?

Despite the warning signs to not get involved, Erin investigates. And when the killer attacks, she orchestrates her efforts into one last crescendo, hoping to avoid a deadly finale.

Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. The past president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat, an avid bird-watcher.

Swing by my website and join the mailing list for my seasonal newsletter. And join me on Facebook where I announce lots of giveaways from my cozy writer friends.


  1. I will try the salad. The dressing sounds interesting with the chili! Looking forward to reading Treble at the Jam Fest!

    1. Dee, the original recipe called for a Fresno chile; seeing none in my grocer's, I subbed the Anaheim, which was yummy.

  2. Love your description of your cooking process! (Like we all haven't done it now and then.) What an interesting flavor combination.

    1. I love that we are never too precious about cooking at MLK!

  3. Love the cooking chaos!
    Real life recipes.

  4. Thanks for keeping it real!! At first I thought Peach Salsa but re-read to Salad! Will have to try this one.

  5. Better than a Food Network cooking show! Love the chaos! And the recipe sounds good, too.

    1. I'm still finding splatters of olive oil on the fridge...

  6. This sounds really yummy. I like hearing about others' kitchen mishaps. This way I know I'm not the only one who has a chaotic kitchen.

    1. Happy to help! Normally, I'm a tidy cook -- as I said when we talked about cooking chaos the first Monday of August. But we all have our moments!

      Enjoy the salad!