This bright, fresh salad is loaded with delicious seasonal produce – perfect to chase away the winter blues!
Have you noticed that the produce bins at your local market are filled with sweet, juicy oranges of all varieties right now? I’m crazy for that fresh, intoxicating aroma that greets me each time I slice into, or begin peeling one of these lovely citrus fruits. To me, they’re the culinary highlights of this cold, often dreary, time of year.
Next time you’re at the market, check out all the different types of oranges. If navel oranges are the only ones that typically make their way into your shopping cart, you’re missing out on some unbelievably delicious options. I used navel, Cara Cara and blood oranges for this salad, but other varieties such as clementines, tangerines, tangelos and/or mandarins would make delicious alternatives too. The beautiful hue of color that is unique to each variety makes for a gorgeous presentation!
My salad today includes baby arugula, but baby spinach or field greens could also be used. Don’t be frustrated if the selection of a specific green at your grocery store is poor. Just substitute whatever looks the freshest and prettiest and you’ll be much happier with the finished product.
Pick up a red onion and a pomegranate while you’re shopping. The red onion will be thinly sliced and doused in a super simple pickling solution while you’re preparing the rest of the salad. The little white and purple slices will be magically transformed to a magnificent magenta hue while you work away. My daughter-in-law Lindsay calls these “quickles” a super quick pickled red onion. They’re absolutely delicious, and can be used in salads and on sandwiches, tacos, enchiladas, pizzas… I almost always have a jar of these beauties in the refrigerator to add a bit of pizzazz to everyday meals.
If you been hanging out at The Café for a while, you might be tired of me saying this, but don’t be intimidated by pomegranates! And, don’t break the bank buying the ridiculously expensive cartons of the prepared seeds! De-seeding a pomegranate is so easy, you won’t believe it. I figured you might be skeptical, so I actually did a step by step tutorial on how to remove the seeds – no fuss, no mess, no water! And you can do it in less that a minute. Check it out!
I shared the Lemon Ginger Poppy Seed Dressing in a separate post because it’s super versatile! Use it on lots of other types of salads, or how about as a drizzling sauce for chicken, shrimp, salmon, etc? It’s one of those super easy, throw-it-all-in-a-jar-and-shake dressings that everyone seems to love.
The recipe includes a crunchy, sweet and salty almond topping that will take less than 5 minutes to to throw together. Warning – you might want to make extra, as the nuts are dangerously addictive and actually make a healthy little snack. Just store extras in an airtight container.
So that’s the scoop on this yummy Arugula Orange Salad with Lemon Ginger Dressing. Go ahead, make your shopping list – and be sure to serve it before the citrus season slips away. I think it may become a fresh, delicious highlight of your winter meals too! Bon Appétit!
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Lots of people ask what kind of cookware, small appliances, cutlery, etc. I use in the kitchen. Here’s what I used to make this recipe.
- For the Quick Pickled Red Onions
- ¾ cup white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ medium red onion thinly sliced
- For the Honey Glazed Almonds:
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 teaspoons honey
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- kosher salt
- For the salad:
- 8 ounces baby arugula*
- 3 medium oranges** peeled, halved and cut into 1/4-inch slices
- ½ cup pomegranate arils or seeds
- Quick Pickled Red Onions
- Lemon Ginger Poppy Seed Dressing
- Honey Glazed Almonds
- For the onions, combine vinegar, sugar and salt in a pint size jar. Stir well to dissolve sugar and salt. Add sliced onions and add enough water to cover the onions. Cover tightly and gently shake the jar. Set aside for at least 15 minutes while preparing nuts and the rest of the salad. (Can be made a day or two in advance, if desired.)
- For the almonds, lay a piece of foil on a work surface. Spray lightly with cooking spray or drizzle with a bit of oil, then rub oil around with a paper towel to lightly grease the surface. Melt butter in a medium size, non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add honey and stir to combine. Add the nuts and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently until almonds are golden brown. Sprinkle lightly with salt and stir gently. Spread almonds out onto prepared foil. Some will stick together in little clumps. Set aside to cool. Store in an airtight container after cooling, if not using right away.
- For the salad, place arugula (or other greens) in a large salad bowl. Top with orange slices, pickled red onions (as many as you like, you probably won’t use all of them), and pomegranate arils. Drizzle with dressing and sprinkle almonds over the top.
- Servings: 4
* Feel free to substitute other greens in this salad. Spinach, field greens, baby kale and red leaf lettuce are also delicious..
**Regular oranges are delicious in this salad or a combination. I like to use a mix of blood oranges, Cara Cara oranges and navel oranges for a really pretty look.