Summer might as well be the season of the entrée
– a time to celebrate share plates, BBQ, and refreshing salads.
We continue our love affair with our local markets. This issue Paradiso visits the Byron Farmers Market in search of bright, vibrant fruits and vegetables for summer share plates that bring a table to life. Here’s what we came up with.
Watermelon, feta, mint and pomegranate molasses!
A firm feta cheese (we can’t get enough of the Lillian Feta from Nimbin Valley Dairy)
Bunch of mint
Toothpicks are handy to help assemble, though can be done on a large platter without
Cut your watermelon into the desired chunk or slice, rind removed. Wash and dry mint. Cut feta into desired size and shape. Then set to work assembling your masterpiece. Feta, watermelon, and then mint. And a small drizzle of pomegranate molasses right before serving – be careful not to add too much molasses as it’s alarmingly tart!
tip: if you want local watermelons, arrive at the markets early!
Purple cabbage and yellow capsicum with miso
Makes 4 +
This salad has all of the crunch, married with the umami richness of miso for a well-rounded and perfect side to any summer meal. Try it with a side of grilled fish, meat or tofu.
Grilled peach with haloumi and fresh herbs
Serves 4 +
This dish screams 80s dinner party, but has so much scope. Take a peach or nectarine, grill it, and dress it up! Having a pan that griddles makes for those oh-so-impressive grill marks – also easily achieved on the BBQ, of course!
½ cup canola or coconut oil
4 tablespoons of buckwheat kernels
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons of white miso (we got ours from Byron Bay Miso)
3 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
½ head purple cabbage, cored and cut into 1 cm slithers
1 yellow capsicum*, quartered, deseeded
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
2 tablespoons of edible seaweed such as wakame
*capsicum is interchangeable for another vibrant vegetable or fruit such as radishes or mango.
Heat the oil in a small saucepan over a medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the buckwheat and cook until the kernels are just brown – keep a close eye on them! Scoop with the slotted spoon and drain on plate lined with paper towel, let cool and season with a pinch of salt. In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice, vinegar, miso, tahini and soy. If it’s too thick, add a dash or two of water. Take a large bowl and toss the cabbage with the dressing until nicely coated. Taste and season with more lemon juice and/or salt if needed. Arrange the cabbage on a serving platter then place the capsicum on top, then sprinkle over the fried buckwheat, sesame seeds and seaweed.
3 peaches, de-seeded and halved
Canola oil or coconut oil
Seasonal herbs (we picked up some lovely bunches of basil, mint and coriander from The Gourmet Salad Hut)
1 block of haloumi (from Cheeses Loves You)
Vinaigrette: Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, salt, olive oil – a couple of tablespoons of each
Pick, wash and dry herbs. Heat pan or BBQ. Coat with oil and grill peaches to achieve grill marks (approx. 3-4 minutes each side). Remove from pan to cool. Now repeat the process with your haloumi. For the vinaigrette, add a tablespoon or so of each ingredient and whisk with a fork. Dress just before serving. Arrange herbs and top with peaches and haloumi, dress with vinaigrette and serve asap!
Tip: Add some toasted walnuts or macadamia nuts on top! We also added some ‘Brazilian kiss peppers’ (a little hard to come by, but if you can find them they add an awesome zing).
To complete this experience, see our website for an incredible Margarita recipe!
Originally published in Paradiso Issue 02