This post was originally published here on August 29, 2014. It’s a favorite recipe of mine, so I thought it was worth re-visiting with new and improved photos. I hope you try it out!
I have been in a MEGA salad mood these past couple of weeks. Like, I literally can’t stop eating salads. They’re all I want. All day. Every day.
I’ve always been a big salad eater. But you know how there are some days when you’re just eating a salad because you feel like you’re suppose too be. Like, maybe you’re trying to erase some poor choices from the day before. Yeah. I’ve had my fair share of those moments (most recently, this past Saturday). I think we all have.
But lately, I don’t feel like that at all. My appetite for salads has been insatiable. Luckily for me, there is an overwhelming amount of delectable Summer produce available right now. So feeding my salad desires has never been so easy. Or delicious.
This Grilled Potato and Fig Salad with Maple-Almond Clusters has been a favorite recipe of mine for years now. And it’s currently making it’s way back into heavy rotation. I’m literally obsessed with this salad. And as long as I can reliably find fresh figs at the grocery story, that obsession will continue. Fig season is SO SHORT (which pains me greatly). So when they are around, you know damn straight I’m taking advantage of them in every way possible.
I’m also taking advantage of my grill while the weather allows, grilling both the potatoes and the figs for this recipe. The potatoes do require a little pre-cooking, which helps them to cook evenly on your grill without burning. But it’s worth the extra step. Because everything tastes better from the grill. Even salads.
I find that I don’t need much in the way of dressing for this salad. Just a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar is plenty for me. But you can add some extra-virgin olive oil, if desired.
Beware these maple-almond clusters. They are pretty much like crack. CRACK I tell you! It takes a lot of willpower not to eat (demolish?) the entire batch in one sitting. You might want to just go right ahead and double the recipe, so you have enough for nibbling on and for topping this salad. Trust me when I say they are highly addicting.
Avocado toast is a food that I just can’t quit.
I know a lot of folks are feeling kind of “over it” lately. It’s achieved Kardashian-level celebrity status, right up there with kimchi, smoothie bowls and those Starbucks Pink Drinks. But to me, avocado toast isn’t just the latest trend. To me, avocado toast is pure comfort food. It’s the food that I eat when I’m stressed and rushed and struggling to find the time to prepare a “real meal”. And it’s the food that I eat when I just don’t feel like eating. Like this past week, when my heart felt heavy and my house seemed unbearably empty. Avocado toast was the only thing that actually tasted really good to me.
Today’s version includes one of my favorite curious little fruits: kumquats. They are in season right now, so keep your eyes peeled for these sweet-sour gems that look just like miniature oranges.
And speaking of peels, you can eat them. Yup. Not need to peel kumquats (thank goodness because that would be a laborious task!). In fact, the peel is actually the sweeter part of the fruit. It’s the center that packs a pucker-inducing punch!
Last year, I made a Spicy Kumquat and Whipped Ricotta Crostini. And a couple of weeks ago, I spotted these gorgeous Kumquat Honeycomb Tartines from Alanna at The Bojon Gourmet. So it’s been on my mind to create a new version of kumquats on toast.
To that end, I asked my Mom for a few kumquats for a recipe and, of course, she brought me an ENTIRE CASE. Not that I was particularly surprised by this. Because my Mom always goes above and beyond the call of duty (it’s one of her most endearing qualities). But a case of kumquats is A LOT to try and get through. So I’ve been making plenty of dishes with kumquats this week (I might just have to share another one soon!), as well as making pickles, marmalades and chutneys.
These quick-pickled kumquats are exactly as they are named: pickled kumquats that can be made very quickly. I start by slicing each kumquat into 3-4 slices. No need to discard the seeds, but I do remove and discard the tiny woody stem that is sometimes found on the end. Then I boil them briefly to soften the peel and take away some of the bitterness. Finally, I combine the kumquat slices with a easy rice vinegar brine and pop them in the refrigerator to chill. Within an hour, they are ready to consume!
If quick-pickles are known as “quickles”, then are quick kumquat pickles known as “kuickles”?
Because I have so many kumquats, I made myself a couple jars of these quick-pickled kumquats. But you can certainly scale the recipe down, if you prefer. The quick-pickled kumquats should last for a week, maybe more, in your refrigerator.
This Quick-Pickled Kumquat Avocado Toast is just one in which you can enjoy your “kuickles”. Try them on sandwiches, with grilled chicken or fish, or add them to a cheese platter. Or simply eat them straight out of the jar!