Menu Inspiration

Stone Fruit Season

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Summer is here, which means one thing – stone fruit! Apricots, cherries, peaches, plums, and nectarines are all at peak freshness and ready to be served! Cherries and apricots will hit the market first in Mid-June-Early July, with  Peaches and Plums follow in late July-Mid August. Restaurant chefs can take advantage of stone fruit season in numerous creative ways to enhance their menus and delight their diners. Here are some ideas on how chefs can leverage the bounty of stone fruits during their peak season:

  1. Feature Fresh Fruit Salads: Incorporate a variety of fresh stone fruits into vibrant and refreshing salads. Combine them with leafy greens, herbs, nuts, and a complementary dressing for a colorful and flavorful dish.
  2. Craft Flavorful Salsas and Chutneys: Prepare savory salsas or chutneys using diced stone fruits, onions, cilantro, jalapenos, and lime juice. These condiments pair excellently with grilled meats and seafood or as a topping for tacos and quesadillas.
  3. Grill or Roast Stone Fruits: Grilling or roasting stone fruits enhances their natural sweetness. Serve grilled peaches or nectarines as a side dish or dessert, or incorporate roasted plums or cherries into savory dishes like roasted meats or charcuterie boards.
  4. Create Summery Desserts: Utilize stone fruits in desserts such as cobblers, crisps, tarts, and pies. The combination of sweet fruit filling with a buttery crust or crumbly topping is irresistible, especially when served with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.
  5. Infuse Flavors into Beverages: Infuse stone fruit flavors into beverages like cocktails, mocktails, RSS lemonade, or iced teas. Use fresh fruit purees, muddled fruit, or infused syrups to add a burst of summer flavor to your drink offerings.
  6. Experiment with Stone Fruit Glazes and Sauces: Create glazes or sauces using stone fruits to accompany grilled or roasted proteins such as chicken, pork, or fish. The fruits' natural sweetness and tanginess add depth and complexity to savory dishes.
  7. Incorporate Stone Fruits into Appetizers: Dice or slice stone fruits into appetizers like bruschetta, crostini, flatbreads, or cheese plates. The combination of sweet and savory elements creates a dynamic and memorable starter for your guests.
  8. Offer Stone Fruit Specials: Highlight seasonal stone fruit specials on your menu to showcase the freshness and versatility of these fruits. Consider rotating specials based on the availability of different varieties throughout the season to keep diners excited.

By embracing the flavors and versatility of stone fruits during their peak season, restaurant chefs can create innovative and enticing dishes that captivate diners and make the most of nature's bounty.

Tomato Peach Salad


  • 1/2 -2 cups- #4677031 MFC baby heirloom tomatoes, halved if large
  • 2-3- #3758391 peaches, sliced into wedges
  • 1 cup- #4920791 pitted fresh cherries
  • 8 ounces  burrata cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (or other nut/seed) (or other nut/seed)


  1. In a large bowl, toss the tomatoes, peaches, and cherries with 1/3 of the dressing. Let sit for 15 minutes at room temperature or up to 4 hours in the fridge.
  2. Break the burrata balls around the salad. Drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette and top with pumpkin seeds and additional fresh herbs. Serve with grilled or toasted bread.
  3. Toss with balsamic vinaigrette.

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