This Southern summer salad has it all — crunchy, peppery greens; soft, smooth cheese; and sweet, smoky, slightly caramelized peaches hot off the grill. Normally your dessert would be the showstopper and talk of your dinner party, but this gorgeous summer salad might just take the cake. It’s pretty, colorful, and full of fresh, summertime flavors, including peppery arugula, juicy peaches and a zingy herb oil that might just become a kitchen staple. Burrata adds a heavenly creaminess to this salad, but fresh mozzarella works deliciously, too.
For me, summertime = simple, fresh meals with seasonal ingredients. I like to do most of my cooking outdoors, if possible, too. Seasonal produce often has loads of flavor and makes simple, every day meals fabulous.
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup packed fresh basil leaves
¼ cup chopped fresh chives
6 cups loosely packed baby arugula
4 ripe peaches, sliced in half
1 ball burrata or fresh mozzarella
¼ cup roasted, salted pecans
⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Combine oil, basil, and chives in a food processor. Process until very smooth and fully incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Pour mixture through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing on solids to extract oil. Discard solids and set aside.
Heat the grill on medium heat. If using an outdoor grill, slice the peaches in half to prevent falling through the grates. If using an indoor grill pan, you can slice the peaches into quarters.
Brush the open side of the peaches with butter and sprinkle with coconut sugar. Then, grill the peach slices for 2-3 minutes on each side, until you have grill marks and the open edge has caramelized.
Gently toss arugula with about 3 tablespoons of the herb oil in a large bowl. Add peaches and gently toss to combine. Arrange mixture plate. Tear burrata into pieces and place on top of salad. Top with toasted pecans. Drizzle with 3 more tablespoons herb oil.