Salad lovers, unite. Anyone else a big salad fan? Soft lettuces, sturdy greens or even no greens, I’m a huge fan. Whether composed on a plate or chopped in a bowl, there’s always a salad on my dinner table.
Spring and summer are my favorite seasons. There is no limit to the farm fresh greens, fruits and vegetables available. If you’ve never dug lettuce out of the dirt and eaten it the same day…. I highly recommend it! But winter…. that’s where I get stuck. Living in New York, everything is readily available. But is it good? Not always. Those $9 strawberries may look beautiful, but they sure don’t taste like fresh local berries.
I’ve taken it upon myself to stick to seasonal fruits and vegetables when I can. Citrus plays a huge role here, and winter is absolutely the best time to buy citrus fruits. Oranges, Meyer lemons, limes, blood oranges… they’re all hitting the markets now and their colors are outrageous.
To be honest, citrus was never really my “thing.” I only started enjoying oranges and grapefruits when I tapped into their savory side. A bracing garlicky parsley sauce offsets some of the sweetness of the fruit. Broiling a few slices of fruit adds a slight bitterness and textural contrast. Avocado, besides for making me happy, lends a hint of buttery luxury.
When choosing your citrus, look for firm, heavy fruit with no blemishes. Oranges shouldn’t have “air pockets”- those seemingly empty spaces mean the fruit is old and starting to dry up. I use a mixture of small grapefruits, navel oranges, cara cara oranges, and Meyer lemons. Anything goes really, just use a variety of sizes and colors for visual interest.
Meyer lemons are a super sweet, fragrant cross between a lemon and a tangerine. When they’re broiled, they’re sweet enough to eat! I highly suggest seeking them out!
Enjoy your citrus salad and remember to let me know how you liked it!
Winter Citrus Salad
1 Meyer lemon
4 oranges/ grapefruits
1 ripe avocado
Red pepper flakes
1 garlic clove
1/2 c fresh parsley leaves (lightly packed)
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
Make the sauce:
In a mini food processor, combine the parsley and garlic and process until finely chopped. Drizzle in the olive oil and pulse until combined. Stir in salt.
Prepare the salad:
On a cutting board, slice the top and bottom ends off each citrus fruit. Using a sharp paring knife, carefully slice off the skin and the pith, leaving only the flesh of the fruit. Turn the citrus on its side and cut into 1/4” thick slices.
Take about 1/3 of the fruit slices and arrange on a sheet tray lined with foil. Set the broiler to high. Broil for 2-3 minutes or until tops start to brown.
Slice the avocado and remove the skin and pit. Thinly slice.
Arrange the fresh fruit, broiled fruit, and avocado on a platter. Sprinkle with salt and red pepper flakes. Drizzle with parsley sauce.