This Summer Melon and Fresh Burrata Nectarine Appetizer will Tempt Any Cheese Lover!
The long days of summer are just starting to wind down… the light has the gold-tinged hue of maple syrup, and the garden is bursting with its last hurrah of green herbs and bright flowers. The days may still get steamy, and the sky is still full of birds and bees making their rounds, but the nights have taken on an edge of Fall, and the sound of peepers in the tall oak trees will soon fade. I often sit outside watching the sun set over the mountains and the skies transforming from blue to pink to fiery orange, and absorbing the special magic of this time of year. The perfect setting to embrace the end of the season with a beautifully easy dish! Invite your friends over for a few glasses of Rosé, and whip up this dreamy and Summery Fresh Burrata Salad with Watermelon, Nectarines, & Basil!
Watermelon is the Perfect Match for Burrata!
Buratta is a staple cheese in my fridge, because it pairs with so many ingredients! From simple buratta recipes like sweet peach salad with syrupy balsamic vinegar, to a plate of classic veggie zucchini-noodles tossed with tomato, basil and creamy cheese, the possibilities are endless. But, my very favorite way to enjoy this beautiful buffalo milk cheese is paired with sweet melons!
The intense sweetness of watermelon, combined with cantaloupe, cherries, strawberries, and bright tomatoes, help round out this spectacular veggie & fruit based summer appetizer! The watermelon can be eaten as-is, or used in other dishes like salads to give them some flavor. This fresh burrata salad with sweet watermelon and nectarines makes it perfect for both people who are on special diets, and those trying to avoid added sugars.
Ingredients Needed for Fresh Burrata Salad with Watermelon and Nectarines!
- Fresh Burrata
- Lemon Thyme
- Champagne Vinegar
- Olive Oil
- Edible Flowers
How are Mozzarella and Burrata Different?
Buratta is a very popular semi-soft Italian cheese. It is made from buffalo milk, and adds a soft texture to your dish once opened up. It’s perfect to use in seasonal salads, on cheese platters paired with cured meats, or even sandwiches. The flavor of the burrata varies depending on its maturity when processed, but most have a creamy and mild taste that pairs well with vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers, and fruits like peaches or watermelon.
One of the biggest differences between a fresh mozzarella and burrata is the texture! Mozzarella is elastic and firm all the way through, making it perfect for using on foods like homemade pizza, or a classic caprese salad. Burrata, on the other had, has a slightly stronger milk taste and is formed by filling a mozzarella ‘pouch’ with shreds of fresh mozzarella that have been soaked in cream (this is called stracciatella). This creamy center is part of the magic!
How do you Serve Burrata?
I know what you’re thinking; if this soft cheese is so runny, how the heck do I serve it? Burratas are typically served as an appetizer, and can be eaten by either dipping in olive oil or vinegar, rolling it up with fresh basil leaves, or spreading on garlic rubbed toasted bread. They can also be scooped up and served with grilled Summer peaches, or as we’re preparing it today, in a fresh burrata nectarine salad!
What Goes Inside Burrata?
What people love about a burrata is what’s inside! It’s filled with a beautifully runny stuffing of mozzarella shreds or Ricotta that has been soaked in cream. Once sliced, this creamy ‘stracciatella’ comes pouring out. There is debate on how much cream should be included inside the little pillow of mozzarella, so different families and companies will have their own expectations – but when you pair any burrata with tart strawberries and luscious melon, the result is truly one of the best salads out there!
The Perfect Summer Salad Recipe
Made with seasonal gourmet ingredients like dark cherries, honey, champagne vinegar, and mint, this is one of those simple-yet-beautiful burrata recipes that will thrill your guests with complex flavors and beautiful presentation! I like to prepare this salad as a light, yet flavorful way to start my late summer barbecues or dinners, with a few cocktails or drinks. The elements are all simple, but they are prepared in a way that highlights their unique flavors! Delish!
- Prepare your Shallot & Champagne Vinegar Vinaigrette (see below) and let chill.
- Slice the nectarines and marinate with lime juice, honey, olive oil and mint.
- Wash, pit, or slice your fruits and vegetables. Gather your herbs.
- Using a large bowl or small platter, begin layering your watermelon cubes, melon slices, marinated nectarine slices, halved cherries, strawberries, tomatoes, mint, and basil, while leaving the center clear for your fresh burrata.
- Place your burrata into the center of the dish (if you like, you can VERY GENTLY rinse the burrata before plating).
- Dress with the vinaigrette.
- Garnish with more fresh herbs and edible flowers.
This Light Burrata Nectarine Salad Offers a Delicious Contrast!
This recipe is a weeknight game changer! Fancy, but not fussy, the unique flavor combination of watermelon, burrata and honeyed nectarines will make your taste buds dance! Sweet and savory, crunchy and smooth, this dish embraces contrasts! Add or subtract fruits according to your preference or what is currently season. Remember: This dish is about creativity, and substituting with different fruits is a great option! You could also pair the burrata, with its creamy center, with arugula, tomatoes, and cucumbers for a more savory take.
Follow me on Instagram for more behind the scenes!
This dish was so easy to make and can be easily be tweaked to your liking! I served it with some grilled chicken and it was the perfect summer meal! Make sure to follow me on Instagram @straighttothehipsbaby for more behind the scenes action!
A Summer Salad Bonzana!
Burrata Salad Recipe Variations;
grilled peach burrata salad
- Want to add some smokiness to this salad? Make a grilled peach and burrata salad, by tossing fresh peach halves on the grill!
watermelon burrata salad with cucumbers and tomatoes
- Try a tomato version with slices of beefsteak tomatoes, marinated roasted red peppers, olives, cucumber slices, and lots of fresh basil. Add cubes of sweet watermelon and top with Marcona almonds for a little crunch!
burrata and prosciutto appetizer
- Let’s add a little protein to our plate! Layer in slices of salty prosciutto amongst the melon slices for a savory treat! Serve with the burrata cheese, a balsamic reduction, and fresh basil.
Does this Recipe have to Stay refrigerated?
It depends. The burrata is delicate and will start to spread quickly in the heat. And, like any dairy product, we do want to be aware of spoilage. I would make sure that the cheese is well chilled before adding to the platter and let sit out on the table for up to 40 minutes… but, I doubt this light summer salad will stay in the bowl long enough before being devoured!
Will this Salad Stay Fresh if I make it in Advance?
Yes! But don’t add the burrata until the last minute – keep it floating in water in your fridge. Prepare all of the summer fruits, the dressing, and marinated nectarines in advance. Chill until 30 minutes before you want to serve. You want the fruit to come to room temperature for the best flavor. Plate it up and add the burrata. You’re good to go!
More Healthy & Easy Summer Salad Recipes!
If you are looking for some more summer salad recipes to up your game, try the ones below! Fresh and tasty, these salads can be served as an elegant appetizer course for your next dinner party, or as a main dish, with a little bit of grilled chicken or tempeh.
Fresh Burrata with Watermelon and Nectarines
- 1 large shallow bowl or small platter
For the Salad
- 2 slices fresh watermelon slice on the thicker side to cube
- 2 slices fresh cantaloupe slice on the thinner side
- 1/4 cup pitted cherries
- 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
- 1 medium tomato cut into 1/8 sections
- 1 handful fresh basil leaves
- 6 fresh mint leaves
- 2 sprigs lemon time optional
- 1 ball fresh burrata cheese
- edible flowers optional
For the Honeyed Nectarines
- 2 large nectarines
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 lime juiced
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 4 fresh mint leaves
- 2 springs lemon thyme optional
- pinch salt
For the Shallot Champagne Vinegar Dressing
- 1/2 large shallot sliced into thin rings
- 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 clove garlic smashed and minced
- pinch kosher salt
- pinch black pepper
- For the Dressing
- In a medium glass jar with lid, add the champagne vinegar, salt, and shallot slices. Let sit for 5 minutes
- After quickly pickling, add the olive oil, honey, garlic, & black pepper.
- Close the jar with a tightly fitted lid and shake vigorously. Let sit in the refrigerator until use.
For the Honeyed Nectarines
- Pitt and thinly slice the nectarines and add to a small mixing bowl.
- Add the olive oil, juice of 1/2 a fresh lime, honey, and salt.
- Roughly tear the fresh mint and add to the bowl. Next, add the leaves of two sprigs of lemon thyme (optional).
- Mix to combine and reserve.
For the Salad
- Cube the watermelon slices (or cubes as desired) and slice the cantaloupe slices into thin triangles.
- Halve the fresh cherries and stem & halve the strawberries.
- Stem the tomato and cut into 1/8 pieces.
- Wash & dry your herbs.
- Reserve a large shallow bowl or small platter.
- Place the rest burrata ball into the enter of the large shallow bowl.
- Next, start to arrange the watermelon cubes and cantaloupe slices. Scatter them throughout.
- Now, add the cherries, tomatoes, and strawberries.
- Place torn bits of fresh basil, mint, and lemon thyme throughout the bowl.
- Dress with the shallow champagne vinegar dressing and garnish with edible flowers & herbs.
- Fresh is best! Freshly squeezed lime juice will bring more flavor to the honey nectarines, instead of bottled lime juice.
- Add the burrata at the last moment before serving, for the best results.