It's the last day of August! Oh my god! I've never really understood August as a month, but it's also intrigued me in that, "classic image of summer" kind of way. I don't know why. I like the image of children running around a backyard playing manhunt while our parents get drunk off shandies and grill things. I also think "the end of summer" can be super poetic, if you think about it that way. Regardless, I've always longed to understand August in the way that I understand months like December or April and it hasn't yet happened. My relationship with August is simple, like with that of your sophomore year boyfriend. My relationship with August revolves around peaches.
Peaches and I have a history. When I was nine years old, Mish and one of her best girlfriends took our families (my brother and I, plus two little girls of similar ages) out to the more rural horizon of Virginia for peach pickin'. Mish's friend had a daughter named Jessica, who was 11 and so cool in that special "I AM IN MY DOUBLE DIGITS" kind of way, so our peach pickin' consisted largely of sitting in the trees and acting like hot shit.
"You can tell a ripe peach cuz it bounces when you toss it to the ground," We joked. Little did we know, my sweet and vulnerable baby brother was standing below the branches, holding a peach in his hand and thinking "Ohhhhh! Good idea, Sis!" His paper bag was soon soaked with the juice of several bruised peaches and my heart was full of shame. Mish thinks I tricked him on purpose, but I do not remember doing such a horrible thing. I'll push that thought aside for now.
Luckily, my brother has since learned that not everything I say should be taken literally. I have learned to favor fruit over looking cool and respect the peaches. I think that peaches are very picturesque of stereotypical Americana. Maybe it's because they, like watermelon, are the ideal "summer kid food." You give your child a fresh peach, push him or her out to the curb, and you've got yourself an edible babysitter. Woo-woo! Go peaches.
But we've got to get a move on, people, as peaches are only in season for a few more short weeks. This means peach cobblers and peaches n' cream in my oatmeal and frozen peaches dipped in cinnamon. It also means cold salad that are perfectly squeezed into a lunch shift, like this farro and peach combo.
Farro is a grain that was often consumed by the poorer families of Tuscany, but then the "rustic" trend caught on and everyone was like, "woah, those peasant families with the good-smelling soup sure look thin and healthy", and thus the glory of farro spread throughout the world. It's nutty and slightly sweet, softer and nuttier than rice and more texturized than pasta. It likes to soak itself in vinaigrettes, making it an ideal platform for summer salads.
I used some peaches from a California orchard, along with fresh arugula and chevre from the Mar Vista Farmer's Market. The cold goat cheese and the peaches are sweet and tangy, and the arugula adds a gentle slap of pepper. There is also mint, which I really like. With a cold vinaigrette they are magical, and ideal for lazy lunches or pre-dinner foodstuffs. I recommend them with cold white wine, if you are not eating in this in the back alley of your coffee shop job.
Find the recipe located on Wanderlust, located here. Thanks, Wanderlust for inviting me to play with such a fun ingredient! Farro is the yummiest.
- Stay cozy!