I have a confession to make that I hope doesn’t get me kicked out of the food blogger’s club, or the lover of food club, or any club for that matter. I don’t like goat cheese. I’ve tried. I even have a few recipes on here with it. I keep thinking that if I keep trying, that one day something will click and I will fall in love with it. But that moment hasn’t happened yet. I’m not giving up, because I’m not a quitter – but I had to disclose that before I discussed this recipe.
When I went searching for a Rachael Ray recipe with peaches, this one really stood out to me. I’m not sure why – maybe because it’s easy, and I need more easy in my life right now. Maybe it’s because it’s a salad, and I need more salad in my life right now! But when I looked at it, I loved everything about it – except that goat cheese. I was going to substitute it with something else, but I was feeling adventurous and hadn’t tried goat cheese in awhile, so I thought I’d give it another try. And honestly, the goat cheese kind of ruined it all for me. I ended up picking all of the cheese off that I could, but since it’s a soft cheese, I couldn’t get it all. But I loved the ham and the peach combination. I feel like peaches and pork go so well together. The dressing was missing a little oomph for me – I think it just needed some additional spices. Or maybe grilling the avocado and slicing it into the salad, and just dressing the salad with a simple vinaigrette would be the way to go. But this recipe is a wonderful starting point – and if you like goat cheese, this is probably a perfect recipe just the way it is!!
Spinach Salad with Grilled Ham and Peaches
from Every Day with Rachael Ray August 2009
total time: 30 minutes
Two 1-inch thick slices of crusty bread
1 pound boneless ham steak
4 peaches, halved
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 pound baby spinach
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
Preheat the grill to medium high. Brush the bread, ham and peaches with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook on the grill, turning once, until the bread and ham are charred and the peaches are softened. Remove from grill and let cool.
Slice the ham and cut the peaches into wedges. Cut the bread into large cubes.
In a food processor, combine the buttermilk, avocado and lemon juice. Process until smooth and season with salt and pepper.
Prepare the salad by combining the spinach with the grilled ham and peaches. Top with the croutons and goat cheese and serve with the avocado-buttermilk dressing.