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Nectarine and burrata salad with quick garlic croutons and a balsamic dressing

The sweetness of stone fruits is enhanced when grilled, giving a beautiful caramelised, smoky flavour. Alongside creamy burrata and a simple, sticky balsamic dressing, this salad only has a handful of ingredients and is quick to pull together, proving that there really can be so much beauty (and flavour) in simplicity. Top with easy garlic croutons for lots of contrasting textures too.

Recipe from Cook for the Soul, chapter 'light, fresh and flourish'.

Total time to make : 20 minutes

Servings : 4


2 slices of white bread 2 garlic cloves, halved 250g bag of rocket Handful of basil leaves 3 just-ripe nectarines, stoned and cut into wedges 2 tbsp olive oil 1 ball of burrata (or use 200g mozzarella pearls) Pinch of chilli flakes (optional)

Dressing 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 tbsp honey 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Juice of 1⁄2 lemon Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Start by making the croutons. Grill (or toast) the slices of bread until golden. Once toasted and while still hot, rub the halved garlic cloves over each side, then use a sharp knife to slice the bread into cubes.

  2. Make the dressing by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl or mug and whisk together with a fork.

  3. Toss the rocket and three-quarters of the basil together in a serving dish and set aside until you’re ready to assemble the salad.

  4. Place a griddle pan or large non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Put the nectarine wedges into a bowl, drizzle over the olive oil and use your hands to lightly coat the fruit in the oil.

  5. Once the pan is hot, place the nectarines cut side down in the pan. Cook for 2 minutes on each side until golden and charred.

  6. To assemble the salad, lay the griddled fruit over the rocket and basil, then use your hands to tear over the burrata. Scatter over the croutons and then drizzle over dressing. Finish with a grind of black pepper, a generous pinch of salt, the chilli flakes (if using) and the remaining basil leaves.

Good to know:

  • Salads with fresh fruit are best eaten on the day but will keep for a few hours in the fridge if you want to make ahead or store the components separately and assemble before serving, up to 3 days ahead.

  • Use other stone fruits such as plums, peaches and apricots for seasonal twists.

  • To make this gluten free, use gluten- free bread for the croutons.


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