A happy jumble of baby lettuces and spinach with gorgeous, sweet-tangy slices of sunset-hued blood orange, smooth, buttery avocado, crumbles of salty feta, and crunchy bites of candied pecans skulking about. ♫♪ You make me want to shout......♫♪
I have a crush. A big ol' crush. On blood oranges. Maybe it's for who they are. Maybe it's for what they do to me. Maybe it's because they're kind of rare, that it's not very often that we can find them in these here parts, so precious these orangeses become. (Sorry, I can't say 'precious' without Gollum popping into my mind.)
But, no matter what, no matter where......when I think maybe I eye-spy some blood oranges at the grocer's, or in a bin at a market, or just over there, stuff happens. My eyes light up, my pulse quickens, my feet disappear and by some power greater than all of us I am levitated and propelled, in the blink of an eye, to the treasure-packed orange orbs.
Eureka! Citrus sinensis.
Unassuming on the outside, you'd never guess the flavour packed beauty hiding inside. Just another orange, you might think. Tch, tch, tch, silly you. These little citrus darlin's pack deliciously sweet, juicy orange flavours and never disappoint with a bouquet of gorgeous sunset hued colours from bright tangerine streaked with jujube red, to a totally sumptuous deep crimson. And you never know what you're going to get. Surprise! Oh my sweetie pie blood oranges you've thought of everything.
Okay, enough. A girl can only rant so long on one of her most enduring crushes before people start to think, well you know..........nutty comes to mind.
Which brings me to my latest, favorite salad (where any nut will do) that I will be forever grateful to the wonderfully charming, Joy The Baker for blogging. Thanks Joy. You rock.
I changed Joy's salad up a bit. That's one of the best things about this simple, sublime salad, you can change it up and still come out with a masterpiece. And if you just can't find any blood oranges, grapefruit segments, or to push things to the tropics, mango slices drizzled with fresh lime would slip right into this salad with pizazz.
BABY GREENS BLOOD ORANGE AVOCADO SALAD
I've presented this recipe in a have-your-way-with-it style. So have your way with it! Play with how much goes with how much until you get your own perfect flavour, texture combination.
1/2 cup good quality olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
Sea or Kosher salt and a good whack of freshly ground black pepper - to taste
For the Salad:
Cleaned, mixed baby greens, including spinach
Blood oranges, peeled, sliced.
Avocados - peeled, seeded, diced or sliced
Feta, crumbled - I use goat feta
Praline/toffee/candied pecans, roughly chopped - I use the Praline pecans from Superstore
For the vinagrette: Mix all ingredients in a small mason jar and shake the bejeepers out of it.
For the salad: Use each person plop two good handfuls of baby greens into big salad bowl with orange slices and avocado. Drizzle with some of the vinagrette and toss gently, lightly. Scoop onto serving plates, top with crumbled feta and chopped candied nuts. Serve immediately. Indulge. Repeat.