November 23, 2020
With bitter greens, sweet, tart fruit, pistachios and dates, this mandarin orange kale salad is colorful and beautiful way to start a big fall/winter meal.
Whenever I make this mandarin orange kale salad, I always feel like I’m going to get in trouble.
No, there’s nothing that I am technically doing that should be forbidden. The ingredients are actually the issue, specifically the mandarins.
When I take one of these special oranges for myself, that’s one less for my six-year-old.
It is nearly impossible for me to keep our fridge stocked with enough of them. The other day he devoured 3 in one sitting.
That’s not an exaggeration, and it’s pretty typical.
Of course, I am absolutely thrilled with that amount of citrus and vitamin C consumption.
However, every now and then I would like to get my hands on these juicy orange delights.
I guess I need to do a better job instilling those basic sharing skills.
For now, I am stuck sneaking my citrus.
The good thing is that as we approach the tail end of fall and the beginning of winter, now is the time for oranges, grapefruit and their cousins.
We are moments away from a bigger selection.
And I love citrus in salads. It’s even better when they involve kale.
The bitter flavor of those deep greens and sweet, sour oranges balance each other out.
This salad is very quick and easy because there is no cooking required in the prep.
It’s basically only chopping and slicing.
First, I place chopped kale into a large bowl. For Lacinato kale, I pull the stem from the leaves and finely chop them.
Then I add sliced scallions to the bowl followed by mandarins, separated into segments, chopped pitted dates and pistachios.
Mandarins are my first pick because they are so easy to peel.
Other citrus with softer skin, so they are also a breeze to peel include:
For the vinaigrette, I whisk together white wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
Then I drizzle that over the salad taking care to massage it into the greens.
With those hearty kale leaves, this is the kind of salad I would serve for a big meal. It will stay fresh and crisp longer, and I am a big fan of those bright moments of citrus.
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