Definitely not your average green salad! Sweet nectarines, creamy avocados and crisp cucumbers drizzled with a smoky dressing make this paleo and vegan summertime salad superb.
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With stone fruits like nectarines, plums and peaches now available in local markets, and fresh greens and berries from my garden, this Nectarine Avocado Salad seemed like a logical choice to add to our dinner of Chipotle Chicken Burgers and Grilled Corn on the Cob today.
This salad seems so simple, (and it is) but it has a lot going on in terms of flavour and texture. It’s not just any old salad tossed together in a bowl. What puts it over the top is the smoked paprika dressing! Sweet stone fruit drizzled with spicy, smoky dressing and paired with creamy avocado and cucumber–oh, so good!
The first time I made this salad, I sliced the cucumbers into long thin curls with a vegetable peeler. While they looked attractive, they didn’t keep their crunch (and who wants a salad without crunch!) This time, I left them in crisp bite-sized chunks and added extra crunch with pumpkin seeds. Denis happened to come in from the garden with a bowl of blueberries while I was putting this salad together, and they quickly became the garnish. I had originally planned to use a herb like cilantro, but the blueberries won out.
This smoked paprika dressing is fabulous on this Nectarine Avocado Salad, but it’s bound to be making a regular appearance in my kitchen. It’s just that good! I use the authentic Spanish Smoked Paprika, the same one I use in my Spanish Paella recipe. A little goes a long way! It has a warm smoky spiciness and aroma that adds interest to whatever dish you use it in.
This Nectarine Avocado Salad would be equally as good with fresh peaches too. Switch it up–vary the greens you use, or try it with toasted sunflower seeds or cashews. Just don’t forget the dressing!
Definitely not your average green salad! Sweet nectarines, creamy avocados and crisp cucumbers drizzled with a smoky dressing make this summertime salad superb.
- 1 small head of lettuce of your choice
- 1 large (2 small) nectarines, pitted
- 1/2 large (1 small) avocado pitted and peeled
- 1/2 long English cucumber
- 2 tbsp raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup fresh blueberries
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp honey
- 1 1/2 tsp grainy mustard
- 1 1/2 tsp lime juice
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 3/4 tsp smoked Spanish paprika
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp shallot minced
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Wash and dry lettuce, chop nectarines, avocado and cucumber and arrange in serving bowls or on a platter. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and blueberries.
Combine all dressing ingredients except oil in a blender and process until well mixed. Slowly drizzle in olive oil. Drizzle on salad and serve immediately.
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