Salads are great at any time of the year but definitely during the Summer!!
Summer is for me the season of abundance, flower beds heaving with colour, tons of growth and tasty produce in the gardens and fields and don’t forget about that kiss of sun on your face even though sometimes its only in your minds eye here in Ireland!
Ripe stone-fruit, soft cheese and lots of colourful garden greens with a little bit of nutty crunch is literally the story of this salad plate. I used Macroom Buffalo Ricotta in this recipe and it is just unreal!! If you can get your hands on some, make sure to use it.
Nice additions are edible flowers, caramelised nuts or turn it into a complete meal with grilled chicken or prawns alongside some grains or potato wedges.
Whatever way you like to serve your salad, make sure to have some crusty bread on the side to mop up all the lovely flavours!
Swap the basil oil for pesto too!
- 250g cherry or small plum tomatoes
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp oil
- salt and pepper
- 6 peaches
- honey or maple syrup
- 500g salad leaves
- 1 x 200g tub ricotta
- 1 ball of burrata
- 50g roast almonds, halved
- 100g fresh basil leaves
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 4 tbsp oil
- pinch of sea-salt
- Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400°F.
- Halve the tomatoes and place into an ovenproof or roasting dish. Add the balsamic vinegar and oil with a pinch of salt and pepper before roasting in the oven for 20 minutes or until the tomatoes begin to blister. (This step can be prepared in advance and stored in the fridge.)
- Place the ricotta in a bowl and whip with an electric or handheld whisk until it is well loosened.
- Halve the peaches and remove the stones. Brush the inside flesh of each peach with a little honey.
- Heat a grill or frying pan over a high heat until it begins to smoke (a BBQ can also be used for this step). Add the peaches to the pan, flesh side down and cook for 5-8 minutes or until the grill marks appear and the peach is warm through. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Make the basil oil: blitz all the ingredients together in a food processor or blender until smooth. Place in a resealable jar and store in the fridge.
- Assemble the salad leaves on a large platter, place the tomatoes and peaches on the leaves. Add a dollop of ricotta into the centre of each peach with strips of burrata scattered around the plate. Finally scatter the almonds over the top and drizzle with a tablespoon or two of the basil oil.