August will always hold a special place in my heart as the ripest, richest part of summer. Back east, the peaches, tomatoes, and corn were other-worldly good, the Atlantic ocean was warm, and the mood was carpe diem.
I'm sure there are plenty of good reasons, but I'm not a fan of school starting before labor day. It just feels wrong, even here in the endless summer of Southern California.
I loved this article in the New York Times that shares my sentiment.
We test them almost to death, we make them play sports till their arms fall off and their knees implode. Now we're taking away our children's summers. Do we not like them anymore?
We all need August … sweet, idle August.
August is when we would pack up the family car and head off to lakes at their warmest, sweet corn at its sweetest, s'mores at their s'moriest.
If you carve away at August, you carve away at childhood. It's just one more way we're inadvertently undermining the needs of the American family.
So in honor of the stolen final weeks of summer, I'm sharing my very favorite summer fruit salad (inspired by this recipe), which highlights some of the finest late season jewels – nectarines, peaches, apricots, cherries, and blackberries.
The balsamic, fresh mint, and honey are not cloying, but rather emphasize the flavorful sweetness of the ripe fruit.
Serve this summer fruit salad on its own, over yogurt for breakfast, or with a scoop of my favorite homemade vanilla ice cream while you savor the best parts of summer.
Summer fruit salad ingredients
- 4 nectarines*
- 3 peaches*
- 4 apricots*
- 1 pound sweet cherries
- 1 bunch mint leaves
- 1 pint blackberries
- 2 tsp. high quality balsamic vinegar
- 3 T. raw honey – buy raw honey here
*Feel free to use whatever combination of summer stone fruit is available in your area.
Summer fruit salad method
- Pit and cut stone fruits (nectarines, peaches, apricots, and cherries) into bite-sized pieces.
- Remove and discard stems of mint and chop mint leaves finely.
- Toss all of the cut fruit together with mint, blackberries, and balsamic vinegar.
- Drizzle honey over the mixture and toss again. Allow fruit to marinate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
How will you celebrate the final days of summer?