Wednesday, February 24, 2010

citrus salad with cilantro and mint

citrus salad

Ok, there’s no way of getting around this. This post. Well, it’s just sitting down, looking me squarely in the face and refusing to budge. It’s taunting me, taking its time, making me carefully search for each word. I hate writing like this: arduous, painful, unnatural. There are days when these posts practically write themselves; my excitement is usually so hard to contain. But today, I’m just out of my element. Which is quite opposite of how I feel about this salad. I think my ardor for this salad is inversely proportional to my ability to convey it.

the suspect line-up

This salad is officially my cure for winter doldrums. Gray skies and snow banks, you’ve got nothing on me as long as I’m armed with this little burst of sunshine on my plate. It brings a smile to my face even as I type this because this salad is so delightfully happy, you can’t possibly be in a bad mood once you bring a forkful of it to your mouth. The fragrance alone is sparkling, giddy and invigorating. And to say I’ve become obsessed, would be a slight understatement. Minutes after I served this at book club, it was gone, second helpings and all. And pretty looks aside, this salad’s got looks and “brains” so to speak. It delivers on flavor even more than it delivers on looks. And just look at it – isn’t it a stunner?

citrus salad

I should also confess that had I not fallen for this salad hook, line and sinker, I would still have been forced to make it given that I’ve about twenty pounds or citrus sitting at home, on the account of getting a wee bit overzealous in ordering citrus for my grocery delivery. I sort of lost track being so excited to have some in-season fruit, and when grocery boxes arrived and half of them were oranges, lemons, grapefruit and clementines, I initially thought of starting my own juice bar. Vitamin C and I are such BFFs right now – we’re tight like you wouldn’t believe.

My zeal for all things citrus can be easily explained – what other fruit, besides bananas, looks good right now? None! The apples and pears are looking sad and taste uninspiring. Our local grocery store is carrying cherries at a price that made me gasp and price aside, they weren’t looking so great either. Berries are bland, as are melons and stone fruit. This leaves citrus looking quite attractive. And pretty too. My dining room table looks so much brighter with these orange and yellow orbs sitting pretty in a bowl. If nothing else, they cheer me up visually. But as these citrus guys are at their peak right now, they taste amazing as well.

citrus salad

All this salad needs is a little shallot, some slivered mint and cilantro, and a light vinaigrette sweetened with maple syrup to highlight the sweetness of the citrus. What you get is bright, clean, uplifting flavors full of sunshine. I eat this salad and I can’t help but grin from ear to ear; it makes me downright giddy and inspired. Much unlike this post.

Citrus Salad with Cilantro and Mint

3 blood oranges
1 cara cara orange
1 navel orange
1 pink grapefruit
pinch of flaky sea salt
1 shallot, chopped

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
1/2 tsp grade B maple syrup
a few squirts of fresh lime juice

1/4 tsp slivered mint
1/4 tsp slivered cilantro


1. Peel fruit making sure to remove as much pith as possible; slice into wheels. Be sure to remove the pits.

2. Layer fruit on a serving dish alternating pieces of various oranges and grapefruit to create a colorful look. Sprinkle with sea salt and garnish with the chopped shallot and slivered herbs.

3. In a cup or a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar and maple syrup. Taste to make sure the flavors are balanced and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Drizzle over the salad and serve.

Serves 4.

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  • 1

    Love the variety of oranges. I think some kind of a nut would be good too: almonds, cashews, maybe even pistachios.

    February 24, 2010 2:20 pm
  • 2

    I know exactly what you mean when you say your ardor for this salad is inversely proportional to your ability to convey it. This salad truly is a stunner.

    February 24, 2010 2:55 pm
  • 3

    This looks fantastic. I am a huge fan of oranges so I can only imagine this would be amazing. The addition of maple syrup is a great touch.

    February 24, 2010 2:59 pm
  • 4

    I love the colors in that salad, beautiful!

    February 24, 2010 4:25 pm
  • 5
    Winnie said:

    You didn’t actually need any words for this one- the pics and recipe are enough- it’s truly gorgeous and delicious as well, I am sure.

    February 24, 2010 7:23 pm
  • 6
    Monika said:

    “Oooh!” That was my instantaneous response to this post when the page loaded just now. What breathtaking photos! My eyes are delighted! Is it wrong that it almost seems secondary that this salad tastes as good as it looks? My goodness, you’ve made art.

    February 24, 2010 7:49 pm
  • 7

    This is a stunner of a salad. I want to make this for a dinner party soon. The colors are sensational.

    February 24, 2010 8:43 pm
  • 8

    ok, seriously, that plate is GORGEOUS. looking at it from above it resembles a field of flowers. if it tastes as good as it looks, i need it in my kitchen immediately.

    February 24, 2010 8:46 pm
  • 9
    lo said:

    Gosh, I think I could sit there and stare at the picture of that salad all day long. What a stunning array of color. And I’ll bet that mint/cilantro combo is just stellar with all that citrus!

    February 24, 2010 8:48 pm
  • 10
    anna said:

    Sooo pretty! Having eaten more than my share of mandarins today, I can definitely agree that citrus is just about the only thing that’s great right now!

    February 24, 2010 10:51 pm
  • 11
    codfish said:

    Oh, lovely. I’ve been using up my citrus (I over-buy whenever anything is in season too—still have about 5 pounds of apples that are on their last leg) in a dessert salad with star anise and pernod, but I’m ready for something more like this. Very excited to try.

    February 25, 2010 6:31 am
  • 12
    zara said:

    The colors are beautiful. The salad looks like art.

    February 25, 2010 10:53 am
  • 13
    Shira said:

    Thanks for the inspiration. In Paris, the rhubarb hasn’t arrived yet (though it has in London, not sure about that), and the apples and pears are looking a bit old. For me, the only challenge is getting all the pith off the fruit.

    February 25, 2010 12:51 pm
  • 14
    vee said:

    this is very similar to the citrus salad deb posted at smittenkitchen a few weeks back, minus the feta. looks lovely.

    February 25, 2010 7:04 pm
  • 15

    Citrus makes winter “do-able.” In fact, it may be one of the only things that makes it “do-able.” And a lovely, too, in this simple preparation.

    February 25, 2010 7:23 pm
  • 16
    Jennie said:

    Knowing January and February are peak citrus seasons is one of the few rays of sunshine in this cold, wet, grey weather. Thanks for sharing, even if it was under duress ;)

    February 25, 2010 9:04 pm
  • 17

    […] Citrus salad with cilantro and mint from Sassy Radish (even if you don’t want to make it, check it out for her gorgeous pics). […]

    February 26, 2010 5:14 am
  • 18
    Radish said:

    Yes, and also a lot like Mark Bittman’s too. Everyone’s doing citrus these days.

    February 26, 2010 9:01 am
  • 19

    I agree with Winnie, the photos and the recipe for this post were enough as the beautiful photos conveyed the true meaning of simplicity, sophistication, sassiness, and pure deliciousness. :D Great post!

    February 26, 2010 10:16 am
  • 20
    Natasa said:

    I can’t get any shallots… Would an ordinary onion be too strong?

    February 26, 2010 11:47 am
  • 21
    Radish said:

    Natasa – I think you can use an onion, definitely!

    February 26, 2010 2:16 pm
  • 22
    Anna said:

    I loved the mint, cilantro combination, so refreshing. Beautiful pictures too. :-)

    February 26, 2010 8:19 pm
  • 23

    What a gorgeous salad! Those little rounds of citrus look like little sunshines – perfect on a dreary winter’s day.

    February 27, 2010 10:04 pm
  • 24

    I certainly sympathize with those hard-to-write blog posts, but I find that they often turn out much better than expected. I really enjoyed this one, and the pictures are gorgeous!

    March 1, 2010 12:28 pm
  • 25
    molly said:

    Oh, man, I adore citrus with cilantro. And with mint. But why oh why had I never thought to combine them? So glad you bucked up and busted through with this one. I can’t wait…

    March 1, 2010 6:46 pm
  • 26
    Rex said:

    I was going through all of the sites that are going to be in the 55knives book and stumbled across yours. I really like the look of your blog and the salad looks amazing. I feel your pain about having writers’ block. Your challenge turned out really nice. Love the post.

    March 2, 2010 12:19 pm
  • 27

    grapefruits have been amazing this winter and we just bought some blood oranges for a cocktail recipe – will be buying more to make this beautiful salad soon!

    March 2, 2010 6:21 pm
  • 28

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    March 10, 2010 5:14 pm
  • 29
    Alex said:

    Try adding some crumbled feta over top. Its awesome.

    March 11, 2010 5:12 pm
  • 30
    Radish said:

    Alex – thanks, i’m actually very meh re: feta :) I know, weird.

    March 11, 2010 5:27 pm
  • 31
    David said:

    Oh no, now I feel bad! We posted a citrus salad similar to this just the other week. I couldn’t really tell where I got the inspiration from. But when I stumbled over your post today I realize that I must have seen this before. It is too similar to be a coincidence. So sorry! I will credit you in our post immediately.
    BTW, love that you added cilantro. We made a dressing with cinnamon, it was also a good combo.

    March 12, 2010 2:17 am
  • 32

    […] Citrus Salad (adapted from Sassy Radish) […]

    March 12, 2010 2:21 am
  • 33
    Radish said:

    David – thank you so much for the credit, but it looks like you guys pulled this one together on your own :) Lovely pictures as well. Love the pistachio idea too!!

    March 12, 2010 7:22 am
  • 34

    […] peeling the orange, at least now I enjoy what is inside.  So which citrus salad to make? Spoiled by so many choices, I eventually settled on making a citrus salad with Iranian green raisins, […]

    March 25, 2010 3:26 pm
  • 35
    Stacie D said:

    One of the prettier plates of food I’ve seen in a while. Gorgeous!!!

    April 7, 2010 12:25 am
  • 36

    I’m in love with this kind of salads, I could eat them all my life. Yours looks so beautiful and colourful! Just lovely.

    April 9, 2010 1:41 am
  • 37

    […] Citrus Salad with Cilantro and Mint: (as seen in picture) All this salad needs is a little shallot, some slivered mint and cilantro, and a light vinaigrette sweetened with maple syrup to highlight the sweetness of the citrus. What you get is bright, clean, uplifting flavors full of sunshine. I eat this salad and I can’t help but grin from ear to ear; it makes me downright giddy and inspired. Much unlike this post. Recipe from Sassy Radish. […]

    April 22, 2010 12:13 pm
  • 38

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    August 13, 2010 2:16 am
  • 39

    […] salad Image by sassyradish Citrus Salad with Cilantro & Mint on […]

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  • 40

    […] initial thoughts turned to salads I typically gravitate to in the winter. Plates of bright citrus, bowls of hearty lacinato kale, mounds of sturdy escarole. But none of those went as well with […]

    February 11, 2011 9:44 pm
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  • 43

    […] made salade de fruits for class celebrations year after year. The salad was also inspired by this Sassy Radish […]

    March 17, 2012 5:53 pm
  • 44

    […] tend to eat a lot of citrus this time of year. I suspect you do too because there’s not that much other fruit around that […]

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  • 45
    Johane said:

    (I can’t see the recipe for the Amazon ad right beside it… ;) Looks so luciously good though!)

    February 1, 2013 8:49 am
  • 46
    olga said:

    Johane – I am sorry, I’ve been working with MS advertizing people for 2 whole days now and they’re still working on it. My deepest apologies for this inconvenience. It’s a great salad, so do come back in a day and hopefully it’ll be fixed!

    February 1, 2013 9:20 am

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