Crunchy Munchie Salad© HelloIndia

9 Chefs Share Their Favourite Summer Salad Recipes

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Sonal Nerurkar & Amber Tikari

Salad season is here! To help you get your greens on, HELLO! asks chefs for their best recipes featuring the freshest produce of the moment...

Chef Aryav Gahlaut, Head Chef, Swan©HelloIndia

For Aryav, summer is a time for outdoor grilling or minimal cooking. “I like to call this my Italian Summer Salad,” he says of this light and colourful creation. While grapefruit has numerous health benefits, its strong citrus flavour can be an acquired taste. However, with the right dressing, it can work wonders. “Salads are only as good as their dressing, at least for me. They need to complement each other,” he says, recommending pairing this salad with white wines like Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, or Riesling.

Grapefruit and Thai Pomelo Salad (Serves 2)

Grapefruit and Thai Pomelo Salad©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 70g grapefruit
  • 90g pomelo
  • 20g puffed quinoa
  • 110g arugula leaves
  • 50g lollo rosso lettuce

For the dressing

  • 10ml olive oil
  • 10ml honey
  • 10g lemon juice
  • 30ml orange juice
  • 40ml vinegar
  • 5g salt
  • 2g black pepper
  1. Combine all the ingredients for the salad dressing and stir well.
  2. For the pomelo and grapefruit, remove as much white peel as possible and break both fruits into bite-sized wedges.
  3. In a bowl, add the mentioned fresh lettuce and fruit wedges, then pour over the dressing. Toss well to combine, garnish with puffed quinoa and serve.

Chef Matteo Fracalossi, Executive Chef, Andaz Delhi

Chef Matteo Fracalossi, Executive Chef, Andaz Delhi©HelloIndia

A dish showcasing the cool produce available in summer, Matteo’s summer salad highlights the crispness of cucumber and the vibrant flavours of fresh basil and mint. The hero ingredient here is tomatoes. “In the summertime, they’re at their peak, offering unparalleled flavour and juiciness. Their freshness and acidity balance the salad’s flavours, adding a refreshing touch to every bite,” he notes. He pairs it with a blend of apple, carrot and orange juice, or a glass of Chardonnay.

Nutrition Bomb (Serves 2)

Nutrition Bomb©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 160g microgreens
  • 40g cucumber, diced
  • 40g cherry tomato halves
  • 10g basil
  • 10g mint
  • 20ml lime dressing
  • 30g focaccia bread croutons
  • 5g flax seeds for garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the lime dressing

  • 4ml lime juice
  • 60ml oil
  1. To make the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. To make the croutons, cut the focaccia into large cubes, bake in an oven at 140 °C till golden brown and dried.
  3. To assemble, toss all the salad ingredients together with lime dressing, salt and pepper. Add the croutons and sprinkle flax seeds as garnish.

Alice Helme, Co-founder, Caara Café

Alice Helme, Co-founder, Caara Café©HelloIndia

Summer in New Delhi “screams mangoes” says Alice, who describes the sweet North Indian variety as “dripping with sweet nectar, to die for,” and perfect with burrata, avocado and papaya. From the cafe menu, this seasonal salad features mangoes and herbs from Caara’s chemical-free farm—mint, basil, fennel, dill, coriander. “For an extra zing, we’ve added garnished pearl millet popcorn and roasted pumpkin seeds,” she adds, suggesting it as a starter or paired with a lemony grilled fish, like salmon or bass.

Summer Mango Avocado Salad (Serves 2-3)

Summer Mango Avocado Salad©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 200g mango
  • 100g avocado
  • 10g mint
  • 50g rocket leaves
  • 5g fennel leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp jowar popcorn
  • 5 slices red radish

For the Asian dressing

  • 70ml light soya sauce
  • 30ml sesame oil
  • 20ml rice vinegar
  • 5g white sesame seeds
  • 2g Thai red chilli
  1. Combine all the ingredients for the salad dressing in a jar, close it tight and shake until the ingredients are well mixed.
  2. Wash the rocket leaves and spin dry. Peel the mango, remove the stone and cut into slice. Do the same with the avocado.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, toss the avocado slices, mango slices and mint, fennel and rocket leaves and gently toss with dressing to combine.
  4. Arrange salad on serving bowl and drizzle the remaining dressing on top. Sprinkle with the pumpkin seed and jowar popcorn, garnish with radish slices, and serve.

Note: Add burrata for a more indulgent touch or Alice’s favourite, chicken, for added protein.

Ankita Gupta Dujari, Sous Chef at Sienna Store & Cafe

Ankita Gupta Dujari, Sous Chef at Sienna Store & Cafe©HelloIndia

At Sienna, the bazaars of Bengal are the greatest inspiration. During a brainstorming session to add a vegetarian carpaccio to the menu, this gourd-forward recipe was developed. “These are vegetables that are rarely showcased outside of family homes. The gourd adds a refreshing flavour profile to the salad,” says Ankita. The café uses all the varieties available at any point in time: chal kumro (white pumpkin), ninua (sponge gourd), jhinge (ridge gourd) or potol (pointed gourd).

Everything Gourd Carpaccio (Serves 1)

Everything Gourd Carpaccio©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 10g white pumpkin
  • 5g sponge gourd
  • 5g ridge gourd
  • 5g pointed gourd
  • 3g sliced onion
  • 2g sliced red chilli
  • 3g toasted walnuts
  • 2g clover leaves

For the pickled cluster figs

  • 100g cluster figs (anjeer), cut in half
  • 375ml vinega
  • 7g salt
  • 125g sugar

For the salad dressing

  • 50ml sunflower oil
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 30g dijon mustard or kasundi
  • 40ml white wine vinegar
  • 30g honey
  • 4g salt

For the mint oil

  • 250g mint
  • 200ml refrigerated sunflower oil

For processing gourds

  1. Thinly slice all the gourds using a mandoline. For hardy varieties like ridge and pointed gourds, lightly peel them.
  2. In a stock pot, add water and salt; bring it to a rolling boil.
  3. Blanch the gourds for 20 seconds, strain and submerge in ice-cold water to prevent discoloration. Set aside to drain and dry.

For the pickled cluster figs

  1. In a stock pot, add water and bring it to a rolling boil. Boil the cut figs for 5 minutes, strain and submerge in ice-cold water (to prevent discoloration).
  2. For the pickling liquid, combine the remaining ingredients and boil till the sugar dissolves.
  3. Submerge blanched cluster figs in this liquid when it is warm.
  4. When at room temperature, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

For the salad dressing

  1. Place dijon/kasundi, vinegar and honey in a large bowl and whisk to combine. While whisking constantly, slowly add the olive oil. Once emulsified, season with salt. This dressing will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

For the mint oil

  1. In a stock pot, bring water to a rolling boil. Blanch mint leaves for 5 seconds, strain and submerge in ice cold water. Drain, squeezing out all the water.
  2. Chop the leaves and add them to a mixer-grinder with oil. Pulse until you get a puree. Strain the mixture through a muslin cloth. Mint oil will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Plating the Carpaccio

In a round white plate, place the gourds, cluster figs, sliced onion and red chilli slices, asymmetrically. Drizzle salad dressing and mint oil. Garnish with toasted walnuts. Serve cold.

Note: Smoked salmon, tobiko or prawns would pair perfectly with gourds.

Anahita Dhondy, Chef and Author

Anahita Dhondy, Chef and Author©HelloIndia

For Anahita, summer evokes thoughts of cooling veggies, refreshing drinks, cotton kurtas, and memories of school holidays. Her fondness for all things refreshing shines through in this salad, which celebrates both raw and ripe mangoes. “What’s interesting is that the salad features fresh ripe mango, while the dressing contains raw mango — the salad is sweet and sour with a hint of spice. It’s like a super refreshing chutney,” she shares, recommending it paired with a crisp white wine.

Chilli Coriander and Mango Salad (Serves 2)

Chilli Coriander and Mango Salad©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup mango, diced
  • ¼ cup mixed lettuce
  • 1 tbsp cucumber, diced
  • 1 tbsp bell pepper, diced
  • ½ tsp bird’s eye chilli
  • ½ tsp spring onion
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 3-4 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp onion

For the dressing

  • ½ cup coriander
  • 1 tbsp mint
  • ½ tbsp tomato
  • ½ tbsp raw mango
  • ¼ tsp green chilli
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon
  • Salt to taste
  1. To make the dressing, clean and wash the coriander, mint, tomatoes, green chilli and raw mango. Blend them into a fine paste; add cold water if required while blending. Once blended, add olive oil, lemon juice, and salt. Mix well.
  2. Clean, wash, and dry the lettuce.
  3. In a bowl, add the dressing to the base. Place the torn lettuce on top of it, followed by cucumber, spring onion, bell pepper, cherry tomatoes and mango. Season to taste and mix well. Top it with slit chillies and spring onion greens.

Shailesh Johny, Culinary Chef and Director, Lavonne Academy & Café

Shailesh Johny, Culinary Chef and Director, Lavonne Academy & Café©HelloIndia

For Shailesh, summer is a chance to savour the vibrant palette of seasonal produce and the opportunity to craft refreshing dishes that celebrate the bounty of summer. “This salad captures the essence of summer with seasonal figs at their peak freshness, enhanced by delicate caramelisation. It features a unique blend of flavours and textures from roasted beets, balsamic reduction, wild rocket, creamy Burrata cheese, basil oil and nut crumble.” Pair with Prosecco, champagne, or a light white wine and artisanal breads like focaccia, sourdough, or ciabatta.

Bruléed Figs & Roast Beets with Fresh Burrata, Basil & Arugula (Serves 1)

Bruléed Figs & Roast Beets with Fresh Burrata, Basil & Arugula©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 1 medium-sized Burrata cheese
  • 1 handful wild rocket lettuce
  • 1 tsp toasted pine nuts
  • 1 tsp pistachio crumb
  • 12 or 13 slices beetroot (see step 3 for prep)
  • 8 figs
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • Flaky salt and crushed black pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

For the balsamic reduction

  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tsp brown sugar

For the basil oil

  • ½ cup fresh basil, stemmed
  • 1 pod fresh garlic
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  1. To make the balsamic reduction, reduce balsamic vinegar and brown sugar over a low flame till coating consistency. Cool and keep it aside.
  2. For the basil oil, combine fresh basil, garlic pod, seasonings and extra-virgin olive oil in a mixer. Pulse till blended, strain and use as required.
  3. Wash and peel the beetroot. Drizzle with some extra-virgin olive oil, wrap the whole beetroot in aluminium foil, and oven roast for 25-30 minutes at 160°C. Cool and refrigerate.
  4. Wash the wild rocket lettuce and soak it in ice-chilled water for 10 minutes. Drain, and gently pat dry using paper towels.

To assemble

  1. Place a handful of wild rocket in the centre of the serving plate.
  2. Cut the fresh figs into wedges, sprinkle with brown sugar, and blow torch to caramelise evenly. Place randomly on the bed of lettuce.
  3. Using a mandoline, thinly slice the beetroot and shape into small florets to decorate the dish.
  4. Carefully place the Burrata in the centre, score with a sharp knife, and cut open.
  5. Sprinkle flaky salt and crushed black pepper over the Burrata, then finish with a drizzle of basil oil.
  6. Sprinkle with toasted pistachio and pine nut crumbs, and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic reduction. Bon Appétit!

Note: Thin slices of Prosciutto di Parma and Jamón Ibérico can be added for a savoury, salty contrast to the sweetness of the figs.

Manu Chandra, Founding Partner, Lupa

Manu Chandra, Founding Partner, Lupa©HelloIndia

As someone who spends most of their time in the kitchen, in the intense summer heat, Manu’s favourite things about the season are iced water, cold showers, air conditioning, and sunblock. This recipe embraces seasonality and a lighter approach to create a salad that is delicious and delicate, fresh yet fulfilling. “It’s an absolute delight alongside Indian food, but also pairs well with grilled poultry and a crisp glass of Chardonnay,” he says.

Fried Moringa, Charred Corn and Crushed Peanut Salad with Pomegranate and Fresh Dates (Serves 1)

Fried Moringa, Charred Corn and Crushed Peanut Salad with Pomegranate and Fresh Dates©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 100g fresh moringa leaves
  • 50g sweet corn kernels
  • 20g raw peanuts
  • 50g fresh pomegranate
  • 5-6 dates, deseeded and diced
  • 5-10g salt
  • 5ml lemon juice
  1. Wash and allow fresh moringa leaves to dry completely before frying for a brief moment in moderately hot oil. It is bound to splutter so take caution.
  2. Heat a few drops of oil in a non-stick pan and char the sweet corn kernels; season with salt. Alternatively, char corn-on-the-cob with embers and slice lengthwise with a sharp knife.
  3. Toast peanuts in a warm pan, discard skins and toss with salt before crushing mildly.
  4. Toss all the above ingredients along with fresh pomegranate, diced dates and a squeeze of lime, season accordingly.

Note: A little bit of raw as well as fresh, ripe mangoes and delicately grilled prawns make for great additions

Chef Arjun Singh, Sous Chef, Bo-Tai

Chef Arjun Singh, Sous Chef, Bo-Tai©HelloIndia

A recipe inspired by Thailand’s vibrant summer street markets, using seasonal ingredients for a refreshing taste. The fragrant minced chicken is the standout element of this dish. “I love the vibrant colours and fresh flavours that summer brings, especially the abundance of herbs and tropical fruits,” says Arjun. He recommends pairing the Larb Gai Salad with sticky rice or fresh lettuce wraps.

Larb Gai Salad (Minced Chicken with Thai Herbs) (Serves 2)

Larb gai salad (minced chicken with thai herbs)©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 180g mince chicken
  • 5g mint
  • 5g coriander leaf
  • 3g fresh red chilli
  • 3g chilli broth
  • 2g kaffir lime leaf
  • 2g lemon grass
  • 5g dehydrated rice crispy
  • 50g iceberg lettuce

For the dressing

  • 30ml lemon juice
  • 5ml fish sauce
  • 10ml light soy
  • 5g B/f sugar

Garnish

  • 1g mint
  • 1g coriander
  • 2pcs fresh red chillies, diamond-cut
  1. Boil the minced chicken with Thai herbs in hot water, then set aside to cool.
  2. Prepare the dressing by combining all the ingredients.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the chicken and dressing, and mix well.
  4. Arrange a bed of iceberg lettuce in a serving bowl. Top with the mixed chicken salad, garnish with mint, coriander leaves and rice crisps, and serve cold.

Note: Use tofu for a vegetarian option.

Stefan Gadit, Executive Chef, Torii

Stefan Gadit, Executive Chef, Torii©HelloIndia

There are two hero ingredients in this fresh creation, a signature dish at Torii: the green chilli avocado mousse, and the onion dressing, which adds a delightful crunch to the tartare. “The idea is to highlight the fresh and delicate flavours of raw seafood with avocado and cucumbers,” says Stefan, who looks forward to outdoor sports and beach picnics to celebrate the season. This dish pairs well with white wine. “I would recommend Anakena Birdman Sauvignon Blanc or my new favourite, Hana Kizakura Sake,” he says.

Torii Tartare (Serves 2)

Torii Tartare©HelloIndia

Ingredients

  • 20g each salmon, tuna and hamachi
  • ¼ avocado, diced
  • 4g chives
  • 3g tobiko (optional)
  • 3g fried garlic chips (optional)
  • 3g jalapeños
  • 2g fresh herbs to garnish

For the soy onion dressing

  • 15g rice vinegar
  • 25g soy sauce
  • 8g granulated sugar
  • 10g sesame oil and 20g grape seed oil
  • 1g freshly ground pepper and 2g sea salt for seasoning
  • 20g onions, finely chopped

For the avocado mousse

  • ¼ avocado
  • ¼ green chilli
  • 20g spinach
  • 2ml lemon juice
  • 2ml honey
  • Salt to taste
  1. Dice your salmon, tuna and hamachi into ¼-inch cubes and place them in a mixing bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, soy sauce, granulated sugar, freshly grounded pepper and sesame/ grape seed oil until combined.
  3. For the mousse, blend the avocado, chilli and spinach till smooth, season with lemon juice, honey and salt.
  4. Pour the sauce over the salmon, tuna and hamachi and gently mix until incorporated.
  5. Transfer into serving bowl with the avocado mousse at the base and make a mountain with the fish.
  6. Top with jalapeños and fresh herbs, and sprinkle with the chopped chives and tobiko. Serve on a bed of ice.

This story has been adapted for the website from a story that was originally published in Hello! India’s May 2024 issue. Get your hands on the latest issue right here!