In the Winter months, when less fresh seasonal fruits are available, I love to see blood oranges in grocery stores. The season is very short, and they are available now from January to March, so right now is the time to enjoy them.
Blood oranges are like their name a beautiful dark red color, they have smaller seeds than oranges and are much easier to peel. The other benefit of enjoying blood oranges during this season is the power house of nutrition as they contain anthocyanins that dye the oranges red and only further add to their antioxidant potential. These crimson beauties are a powerhouse of vitamin C, fiber and potassium which really benefit in this season when we need a nutritional boost most of all. Blood oranges are also full of plant based Beta-carotene, that the body needs and it’s transformed into vitamin A. When you taste the sweet flesh of a blood orange, it is reminiscent of summer fruits, so I have paired it with a salty cheese, licorice flavored crunchy fennel, and there is just enough sweetness in the honey vinaigrette to bring the salad so perfectly together.
Here is the recipe, and I hope you enjoy! (the recipe will serve 4-6 people)
3 medium blood oranges (peeled and segmented)
1 small fennel bulb (cleaned, trimmed and thinly sliced)
½ small red onion (very thinly sliced)
4 cups Friese lettuce (hand torn)
1 ½ oz. Dubliner cheese or other hard to semi hard cheese (shaved)
1 ½ Tbsp. shallots (very finely diced)
2 Tbsp. Sherry Vinegar
1 ½ tsp raw honey
1 Tbsp. orange juice plus 1tsp zest
6 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper
How to make it
- To prepare the oranges, cut off the top and the base of the oranges. Stand each piece of fruit upright and cut off the peel and pith with a large serrated knife. Using a sharp knife slice the orange horizontally in segments.
- To make the vinaigrette combine the shallots, vinegar, honey, orange juice and zest in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use (this can be prepared in advance).
- To assemble the salad in a large bowl, toss the fennel and Friese Lettuce in the prepared vinaigrette.
- Arrange the greens in the center of each plate, then add the orange segments and top with the shaved red onion and Dubliner cheese.
Stay healthy and well in this season!
Shamrock and Peach (Judith)