According to the Gaelic calendar spring has just arrived on the island. But I had a long walk today and I can say that to the spring - the real one, with trees with buds at the beginning and which paints the world with bright, fresh green later - is still some time.
To light up grey and dull scenery and have a drop of color in the middle of winter I made this salad - colorful, tasty, healthy and very simple to do. It occurred to me by accident, when I was thinking how to use blood oranges which I had in a fruit basket. Combining them with the apple and carrot proved to be a great idea. Very lemony dressing with honey and coriander seeds makes a perfect finish. This salad is so tasty that I made it a few times this week. It works great as a light and interesting starter.*
If you are health-conscious and care about your waist size - orange is not fattening (about 45 calorie/100 grams) but it is rich in organic acids, mineral salts (sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, phosphorus) and vitamins (A, β-carotene, B1, B2, PP, M, E, and C - about 50 mg/100g). The variations of the blood-red flesh is also rich in a substantial amount of anthocyanin derivatives which help to retain youth.
*If you would like to make an easy and simple but still sophisticated dinner for special occasion (remember?-Valentine's Day is just around a corner) I recommend to you cod with fennel and orange en papillote as a main course.
The taste of this salad is directly proportional to the quality of ingredients you use to make it - use the best you can get, possibly organic.
serves 2 as a starter
3 Tbs. mild extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. lemon juice (and a little bit for apples)
1 tsp. lemon zest and a little more to serve, if like (preferable from unwaxed lemon)
1-1 1/2 tsp. light honey
1/2 tsp. coriander seeds
salt, pepper to taste
Dry-fry the coriander seeds in a frying pan, stirring constantly, until fragrant. Remove from the pan and cool. Mix the olive oil with honey until honey is dissolved than add lemon juice, lemon zest, coriander seeds and pepper and salt to taste. Mix well. Leave for about 10 min. for all the flavours to come together.
1 small blood orange
1 small carrot, peeled
1 small apple
2 handfuls of baby greens [spinach, rocket (arugula), watercress]
Trim off top and base of orange with sharp knife. Cut down the sides to remove the skin and white pith. Cut the orange horizontally into thin slices. Cut the carrot into long thin strips (you can use a vegetable peeler to do it). Cut apple in half vertically and remove a core. Cut the halves lengthwise into thin slices.Sprinkle with a little bit of lemon juice to prevent apples from turning brown.
Arrange the orange, apple and carrot on a plate, top with baby greens. Sprinkle with dressing and additional lemon zest, if like, and serve.