Mixed Greens and Winter Fruit Salad

Salad of Mixed Greens and Winter Fruits

Salads adorned with brightly-flavored winter fruits are always a highlight of the season for me. Whether it’s a combo of grapefruit, bacon, avocado and a creamy avocado dressing or a brunch-worthy (or Valentine’s day breakfast in bed) orange salad dotted with candied kumquats, I’m there!

This year’s version combines mixed greens with avocado, pomegranate arils and canned mandarin oranges. I know it seems silly to use canned fruit when the very same citrus is now stacked high at the market, but it’s hard to argue with the convenience of already-supremed-citrus and a lightly orange-flavored syrup that pulls double duty. For those of you who miss croutontopped salads, the pop of pomegranate seeds helps mimic that missing textural element.

What’s your favorite way to use winter fruit, besides in a cocktail? Let’s talk in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter!

Mixed Greens and Winter Fruit Salad

(inspired by Carolyn Sage’s Christmas 2010 salad)
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Makes: 2 as main course, 4 as a starter

To add a bit more substance, consider adding a sprinkle of sliced almonds or chopped walnuts or pecans — candied or au natural — especially if you’re serving this salad as a main course.

Ingredients

Salad:

  • 1 bag (5 ounces) Trader Joe’s Sorrento lettuce mix or spring mix
  • 1 can (11 ounces) mandarin oranges in light syrup, drain and reserve syrup
  • 1 – 2 large avocados, cube and toss with a spoonful of reserved syrup
  • 1 large pomegranate, deseeded, or about 1/3 cup pomegranate arils

Balsamic Dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon (14 grams) balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon (14 grams) reserved light syrup from oranges OR pomegranate juice
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) olive oil
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

Instructions

Divide lettuce amongst plates, top with oranges, avocado cubes and pomegranate arils; set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar through Dijon mustard until combined. Drizzle in olive oil very, very slowly, whisking constantly to emulsify. (You can also combine all dressing ingredients in a small Mason jar, cover, and shake vigorously to achieve similar results.) Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper. Top salads with dressing and serve immediately.

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