Friday, January 14, 2011

Blood Orange & Red Onion Salad with Avocado

This winter our citrus trees have produced a bounty of fruit, especially from the Valencia Orange, Washington Navel, Meyer Lemon, Eureka Lemon, Bearss Lime, Rio Red Grapefruit, Meiwa & Nagami Kumquats, and Moro Blood Orange. The Moro, which is about 4 years old, yielded about 6 fruit this season, but that's a vast improvement from the 2 fruits we harvested last year. However, it's all about quality, not quantity - and the blood orange crop this time around was simply superb! So, what to do with these sanguine beauties, other than eating them as is? Upon further research, I found that there's a classic Sicilian salad recipe combining blood orange, red onions, sea salt, black pepper, and olive oil. So here's my rendition of this refreshing dish:

2 medium blood oranges
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
Fleur de Sel (sea salt)
Black pepper
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, to taste
1 large avocado, sliced
mixed salad greens
Fresh basil*

1. Cut a thin slice off the top and bottom of each orange. Set oranges on a cutting board and slice off the rinds.

2. Cut the oranges crosswise into 1/4" slices. Remove the white pith from the center of each slice with a paring knife. 

3. Thinly slice the red onion and place in a bowl/container. Toss with 1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar, 1/8 tsp. Fleur de Sel and 1/8 tsp. of black pepper. Marinate onions for at least 15 minutes.

4. Line a platter with assorted salad greens. Top with sliced oranges, marinated onions, and avocado slices. Sprinkle with additional Fleur de Sel and black pepper. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil. 

*I didn't have fresh basil for this recipe, but I'll bet it would be a great addition. 

Thinly slice 1/2 of a small red onion.

Marinate with 1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar and a pinch of Fleur de Sel & black pepper.

I got my Fleur de Sel from the Temecula Olive Oil Company. If you don't have this stuff, kosher salt will do just fine.

The rinded and unrinded versions of the Moro Blood Orange. The color is quite bootiful.

Slice the peeled orange crosswise and make sure to remove the white pith from the center of each slice.

Slice the avocado.

Bed of salad greens with the marinated onions. If you have fresh basil, this would be a good time to add some freshly torn leaves to the salad.

Arrange the orange & avocado slices on top and drizzle generously with some extra virgin olive oil.

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