Try our refreshing Summer Berry Salad to finish off dinner on a hot day instead of a calorie-laden dessert. With only a few ingredients it is quick and easy to make but oh so delicious!
A mix of brightly coloured berries are perfumed with aromatic basil and drizzled with sticky balsamic glaze.
These miniature balls of sweetness are at their best during the summer months, but did you know that strawberries, raspberries and blackberries are not true berries but considered aggregate fruits?
We served ours with a simple Madagascar vanilla ice-cream as a refreshing dessert, but it would also pair well with whipped ricotta, fresh cream or mascparpone.
It also makes a fantastic topping for a cheesecake or panacotta.
Just superb for breakfast with coconut yoghurt or Greek yoghurt with some nuts or seeds on top.
What berries go well together?
You can use any combination of berries you like in this salad there are just so many to choose from – juicy strawberries, antioxidant-rich blueberries, sweet raspberries, or even luscious blackberries.
For this salad, I used a combination of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries. It is entirely up to you what mix of berries you would like to use for this salad they are all just wonderful together.
Just keep in mind that blackberries and raspberries do not have a long shelf life, so you will want to use them within a day or two of purchasing.
Also, remember to look carefully in the packs to make sure that there aren’t any bad berries in there which will quickly spread to the other berries in the pack.
Can I use other herbs?
There are also several different herbs that will go well in this berry salad, I have used basil for its wonderful aroma and sweet overtones. But you could also make it with fresh clean smelling mint or liquorice like tarragon as alternatives.
For something a bit different try coriander (cilantro) with its mild clean, citrus flavour and replace the balsamic glaze with 3 tablespoons of lime juice and ½ teaspoon of honey/maple syrup for another take on this berry salad.
How to make your Berry Salad
1START WITH CLEAN BERRIES
First, place your strawberries in a colander and rinse well under gently running cold water, so as not to damage them. Strawberries absorb water easily so that is why it is best to wash and then hull them. Leave them in your colander to drain.
Place all the remaining berries in a separate colander and rinse well under gently running cold water. Again, leave them in your colander to drain.
While your berries are draining, rinse your basil under cold running water, pat dry with a towel and then cut chiffonade.
Chiffonade is a slicing technique where leafy green vegetables and herbs are cut into long, thin strips. To do this stack the leaves on top of each other, gently roll them into a cigar, and then use a sharp knife to slice them into thin ribbons.
3ASSEMBLE THE SALAD
Using some paper towel, gently pat dry your strawberries then hull them, remove any damaged parts and cut them in half. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Gently pat dry the rest of your berries discarding any damaged ones then add to your bowl.
Add the balsamic glaze and the basil chiffonade to your bowl and toss gently, being very careful not to damage them, until the berries, basil and balsamic glaze are mixed well together.
Arrange in a salad bowl and place in the fridge to chill until you are ready to serve.
How do I keep my fruit salad fresh?
This Berry Salad is best served fresh on the day it is made, but it will keep in the fridge for a day or two if you store it covered in an air-tight container.
Can I make it ahead?
It can be made up to four hours in advance just keep it covered in the fridge until needed.
You can also prepare the berries 12 hours in advance if you like, just wash them under gently cold running water, and dry them thoroughly with paper towels. It is important that the berries are as dry as possible otherwise they will spoil.
What can I do with the leftovers?
You can easily make a nice fresh berry compote with the leftovers, just place 1 cup of the berries and 1-2 teaspoons of sugar in a small saucepan and simmering gently on medium until the sugar dissolves and the fruit collapses (approximately 10 minutes).
Another great way to use up any leftover berry salad would be in a summer berry pudding!
Try some more salad recipes using berries
(Times are an estimate and will depend on your skill level)
- 1.3 kilograms mixed berries* (approximately 8½ cups)
- 2 large stems of basil
- 3 tbsps balsamic glaze
- Wash your berries under gently running cold water, allow to drain and pat dry gently.
- Hull your strawberries and cut them in half. Transfer all your berries to a large mixing bowl.
- Shred your basil leaves chiffonade and add to your bowl.
- Add the balsamic glaze to your mixing bowl and gently toss your salad being careful not to damage your berries.
- Transfer to a salad bowl and chill in the fridge until you are ready to serve.
- I used strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries.