Oh Winter, how I adore you so. Some people love tomato season. Others love squash season, but one thing I know to be true is that citrus season is the best season around. I love that you see all kinds of fresh citrus gracing the shelves at the local market, and I don’t know about you guys, but I ALWAYS come across something I’ve never seen before! I thought that I would pay tribute to citrus season and share one of my favorite salads to date. A clever mix of raw golden beets and beautiful winter citrus is the highlight of this salad. Topped with fresh fennel and avocado and an utterly glorious spiced honey vinaigrette, this citrus salad with cool you down and warm you up all at the same time!
So this salad is pretty straight forward, takes hardly any time at all and I love it for a quick lunch, small snack, or a side dish at dinnertime. I was so excited to get my hands on some of Melissa’s Blood and Cara Cara Oranges as they are some of my favorite citrus out there. I mean, who needs candy when that’s basically what they taste like! Natural sweetness…mmmm…my mouth is watering just thinking about it.
The spiced honey vinaigrette is pretty straight forward. Honey is infused with cinnamon sticks and cloves in a small saucepan over low heat. I tend to infuse for quite a while to really extract the flavor (a couple of hours), but I know most of you don’t have that kind of time on your hands. 10 minutes should be a sufficient amount of time to extract that spice. Once infused, you discard the cinnamon sticks and cloves and add the honey to a blender along with some white wine vinegar, salt and pepper. Emulsify and then start drizzling in your olive oil. That’s it!
Seriously, that’s all it takes. Isn’t it wonderful?
The citrus salad part of this recipe is the simplest of all, as all you need to do is peel, slice and assemble! I wanted to mention that I did use raw beets. I know this isn’t a favorite of many. Feel free to cook them to your liking if you wish and then assemble. I think the golden beets and fennel add the perfect crunch to this citrus salad. Drizzle with the vinaigrette and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. There you have it!
If you’re interested in learning more about Melissa’s Produce, head over to their website and check it out! The Blood Oranges and Cara Cara Oranges were so amazing, that I literally could not keep my hands off of them the second I opened the package. Yeah…that good. I have also been frequenting the recipe section of their website. They truly have some amazing recipes utilizing in-season produce. It’s just great.
The recipe for this super amazing citrus salad is below. Pair it with an IPA, especially one that is adorned with citrus notes. Have a wonderful weekend, guys! xo
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 5 whole cloves
- 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 golden beet, peeled and sliced thin
- 1 blood orange, peeled and sliced
- 1 Cara Cara orange, peeled and sliced
- 1 Naval orange, peeled and sliced
- 1 red grapefruit, peeled and sliced
- 1/3 cup thinly-sliced fennel (white part only)
- 1 large avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced thin
- salt and black pepper
- fresh dill
- In a small saucepan over low heat add the honey, cinnamon sticks and whole cloves. Warm for about 10 minutes or until the honey is infused. Remove from heat and discard the cinnamon sticks and cloves. Add the honey to a blender, along with the white wine vinegar, salt and black pepper. Blend on high until it just comes together. With the blender set on low, slowly drizzle in the olive oil until completely incorporated. If you need more olive oil for thinning, add a little more until you reach the consistency you desire (be careful not to add too much as your vinaigrette will taste like only olive oil). Set aside.
- Assemble your salad by evenly arranging the golden beet slices, blood orange slices, Cara Cara orange slices, Naval orange slices and grapefruit slices. Add the fennel and avocado on top and sprinkle salt and pepper to your desired amount. Drizzle with the vinaigrette and top with fresh dill.
- Eat immediately and enjoy!
I prefer my beets in their raw state which is why I left them raw in this dish. If you are not a fan, cook them to your liking and add to the salad that way, or omit the beets all together.