Salad of Burrata, Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula Wendy Goodfriend
Salad of Burrata, Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula (Wendy Goodfriend)

Memorial Day Salad with Burrata, Fresh Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula

Memorial Day Salad with Burrata, Fresh Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula

I love a good salad. And I love how versatile and seasonal they can be. From simply dressed, tender baby greens to elaborate concoctions piled high with grilled meats and cheeses and creamy dressing, salad can be anything from a side to a hearty main meal.

This is one of my favorites. It’s hearty enough to be lunch, but also makes a great starter. It greatness is, however, the sum of a handful of ingredients, so choose wisely and find the best quality you can.

Burrata is one of the stars, and if you’ve never tried it you are in for a treat. The glamorous cousin to fresh mozzarella, burrata is basically like a cheese pouch of heaven. Surrounded on the outside by a layer of mozzarella, the creamy soft interior is a delectable mixture of mozzarella and cream. If you can’t find burrata, you can certainly use fresh mozzarella.

Speck is a type of smoked prosciutto, and thin slices add a note of salty and meaty to this salad. You can use regular prosciutto, or for a vegetarian salad, just leave it out completely.

If you make this in early spring, when the peas are small and sweet, it’s magical. Choose the freshest and tiniest ones you can. The salad doesn’t need a ton, so it really doesn’t take much time to pop them from their pods and blanch them. You can use frozen green peas in a pinch.

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Fresh mint and peppery arugula add crisp flavor to the salad, rounding out the flavors. When it’s in season, look for tiny wild arugula leaves at the farmers’ market.

Serve this on it’s own or with thick slices of grilled bread, as a started or a light main course.

Burrata, Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula Salad with Grilled Toast
Burrata, Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula Salad with Grilled Toast (Wendy Goodfriend)

Burrata, Peas, Mint, Speck and Arugula Salad

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Makes 4 servings

    Ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup fresh or frozen baby peas
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp shredded or chopped fresh mint leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh wild or baby arugula
  • 8 thin slices speck or prosciutto (about 2 ounces)
  • 8 ounces burrata cheese, cut into 4 pieces
  • 4 slices crusty country-style bread
  • Olive oil for brushing
Shell fresh peas if available.
Shell fresh peas if available. (Wendy Goodfriend)
    Instructions:
  1. Bring a saucepan half full of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the peas and cook until tender, about 5 minutes (it really depends on the size of the peas though, so taste them before draining). Drain and rinse under cold water.
  2. Add the peas and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
    Add the peas and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. (Wendy Goodfriend)
    Drain the peas and rinse them under cold water.
    Drain the peas and rinse them under cold water. (Wendy Goodfriend)
  3. In a bowl, toss together the peas, olive oil, lemon juice, and mint. Season with salt and pepper. In another bowl, toss the arugula with a drizzle of olive oil and season lightly with salt.
  4. n a bowl, toss together the peas, olive oil, lemon juice, and mint.
    n a bowl, toss together the peas, olive oil, lemon juice, and mint. (Wendy Goodfriend)
  5. Have ready 4 individual salad plates or shallow bowls. Arrange 2 slices of the speck on each plate, then top with a chunk of burrata. Spoon the pea mixture over the burrata, dividing it evenly. Top with a little arugula and serve.
  6. Arrange 2 slices of the speck on each plate
    Arrange 2 slices of the speck on each plate (Wendy Goodfriend)
    Divide the burrata into equal pieces.
    Divide the burrata into equal pieces. (Wendy Goodfriend)
    Top with a chunk of burrata. Spoon the pea mixture over the burrata, dividing it evenly.
    Top with a chunk of burrata. Spoon the pea mixture over the burrata, dividing it evenly. (Wendy Goodfriend)
  7. If you’d like to serve the salad with grilled toasts, and you have your grill going (or a stovetop grill pan), brush both sides of each bread slice with a little olive oil then place over the fire, turning once, until the bread is toasted and nicely grill-marked. Serve alongside the salad.
  8. Brush both sides of each bread slice with a little olive oil then place over the fire, turning once, until the bread is toasted and nicely grill-marked.
    Brush both sides of each bread slice with a little olive oil then place over the fire, turning once, until the bread is toasted and nicely grill-marked. (Wendy Goodfriend)
    Top with a little arugula and serve.
    Top with a little arugula and serve. (Wendy Goodfriend)

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