Man, is it the perfect time for a fruit salad.
Well, is there ever a bad time? But right now is perfect because the summer berries are awesome and the grapes are amazing. And pineapples? Well those are always tasty. So if you’ve got a hankering for something refreshing and mostly healthy, let’s get you the recipe to make this stuff.
But first, can I talk about something really quick?
I grew up in a little town of about 500 people. You may be asking yourself, what does this have to do with fruit salad? Let me explain.
My hometown of Paris, Idaho, is probably about the best place on earth. I’m a little biased here, but it’s pretty awesome. And I’m not the only one who loves it, plenty of people who have visited have fallen in love with it. It is right by Bear Lake, which is a popular tourist destination and so many people swing through Paris on their way through.
Paris was once a bustling little town, with a packed main street. My dad told me there was a jeweler, mechanic shops, a movie theater, a blacksmith, a bank, a drug store–basically everything you’d need. As the years have gone by, many shops have closed and main street grew quiet. Even I was lucky enough to see the tail end of this. Some of my favorite memories as a child was visiting the drug store and getting ice cream with my grandma. I mean, when you’re a kid, nothing is better than hopping on your bike, riding across town and getting treats with one of your favorite people.
I’m sure many people watched with sadness as some of these abandoned buildings slowly went downhill and fell into disrepair. I know it was sad for me.
In the past couple of years, there have been plans to build a new courthouse. The current courthouse, which is right on the corner of Main Street and Center Street in Paris, is not up to code and extensive and impossible renovations would be required to bring it up to code. So the county has to build a new one. As it stands right now, the plans are to build a new one where the current courthouse is, which is so, so sad. Because the old courthouse was one of the first buildings in the valley.
I was shocked to hear about this plan, but at the same time I felt helpless as to what to do.
Luckily, some amazing people in the valley have banded together to try to save these historical buildings in Paris, namely the courthouse. When I found out about Friends United for Bear Lake, I was so relieved and so excited. It is a nonprofit organization dedicated to saving these buildings. When I contacted one of the ladies in charge to ask how I could help, she asked me if I could make a fruit salad for their benefit dinner.
And boy, was I excited to help!
So here we are with this fruit salad.
I wanted something fresh, but with a little depth of flavor that tasted luxurious. Enter orange vanilla glaze. It takes this salad to another level, let me tell you. Should you need to make this salad in advance, don’t make it more than eight or so hours before you plan on eating it.
This is perfect for barbecues, showers, benefit dinners (ha!) and, well…you don’t need an excuse to make it. Just do!
And should you be interested in helping out Friends United for Bear Lake, more info can be found here.
Summer Fruit Salad with Orange Vanilla Glaze
The orange vanilla glaze kicks this salad up a notch.
- 3 cups chopped fresh pineapple (About one small)
- 1 cup red grapes
- 1 cup blueberries
- 2 cups strawberries, sliced thin
For the glaze:
- 3/4 cup fresh orange juice (about two oranges)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- orange zest for garnish
First, make the glaze by putting the orange juice and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, and let simmer for a few minutes until sugar is completely dissolved, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Set aside to cool
Combine all fruit in a large bowl, and pour the glaze over the top once it has mostly cooled. Toss well, and top with orange zest to garnish. Enjoy!