3 Sides to Set the Scene for Summer

The summer solstice is usually the annual marker for the first day of summer. Although we’re yet to see any true indication of summer just yet, we’ve ambitiously pulled together some side recipes, perfect for when the sun hits and the BBQs come out. Whether you’re catering for vegans, dairy-free, or gluten-free, we’ve got three nutritious and delicious side recipes below that, together, should offer something for everyone!

Fig, Walnut and Pear Salad

A super low-hassle but always impressive side dish! This salad is made entirely from plants (aside from the glaze), so a wonderfully easy option for a group of varying dietary requirements. 


Serves 4

  • 200g mixed salad leaves
  • One medium pear, cut into small cubes
  • 30g walnut halves, chopped
  • 4 fresh figs, cut into small pieces
  • Drizzle of balsamic glaze
  • Pomegranate seeds (optional)


  1. Plate the salad leaves, figs, and pear into your bowl of choice and toss so the components are evenly mixed.
  2. Scatter the chopped walnut (and pomegranate seeds, if using) on top.
  3. Drizzle with balsamic glaze, and you’re done!

Peach, Burrata Pistachio Pesto Salad

A summer favourite here at FFF. The light, creamy flavour of the burrata perfectly balances out the sweetness of the peaches, tied together beautifully with a sweet pesto, and nutty crunch. Burrata is always a crowd favourite, and as a fermented food, it also aids in keeping your gut healthy, and June also marks the start of peach season in the UK! It’s a win-win.


Serves 12

  • 1 handful pistachio
  • 25g basil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 8 peaches
  • 1 handful rocket
  • 2 balls burrata
  • 40ml olive oil


  1. Toast the pistachios in a pan with no oil until golden, and set to the side to cool.
  2. Lightly oil a griddle pan. While you are waiting for the pan to get hot, halve your peaches, depit and cut into slices.
  3. Griddle the peach slices until crisp marks appear, turn halfway. When all the peach slices are griddled on both sides, put to the side on a plate. 
  4. For the sweet pesto dressing, blend the basil and honey with 2 tbsp oil, 1 tbsp water, and a pinch of salt.
  5. Roughly chop the pistachios and drain the burrata balls from the juice.
  6. Plate up, starting with the rocket. Then layer the peaches on top, tear the burrata and evenly spread. Finish off with the sweet pesto dressing and a sprinkling of toasted pistachios.


An all-year favourite, but a particularly great option in the summer, and perfect for using up some leftover bits sitting in your fridge, cupboards, and pantry! While an authentic panzanella contains anchovies, these can be swapped for capers for a vegan take on the central Italian dish. 


Serves 8

  • 1kg ripe tomatoes (any will work, but mixed add an extra layer of flavour!)
  • 300g day-old sourdough or ciabatta, torn into large chunks
  • 100ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 50ml red wine vinegar
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 50g tin anchovies, drained and roughly chopped
  • 100g black olives, pitted
  • large handful of basil leaves, torn


  1. Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. 
  2. Cut the tomatoes – into halves if using small tomatoes, and quarters if using large ones.
  3. Put the tomatoes in a colander and sprinkle over 1 tsp sea salt, then leave to sit for 15 mins.
  4. Spread the chunks of bread on a baking tray and toss with 1 tbsp of the oil. Bake for 10-15 mins, or until lightly toasted.
  5. In a bowl, whisk together the remaining oil, vinegar and shallot. Season to taste. 
  6. Toss the anchovies with the tomatoes, croutons, olive oil dressing, the olives and half the basil in a large bowl.
  7. Spoon the panzanella onto a serving plate and top with the remaining basil.

If you enjoy this recipe, visit our recipes page here, where you can explore a wide array of our mouthwatering culinary creations!

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Meghan Foulsham

Published by Meghan Foulsham

Meghan's fascination with metabolism and the effect of diet on the body covered in her BSc Biochemistry, paired with being a passionate mental health advocate, led her to a Master's degree in Eating Disorders and Clinical Nutrition. Using this, Meghan works with clients to help them reach their goals in the most sustainable way, without sacrificing or risking their mental health.

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