Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Winter Salad: Orange & Date w/ Pistachios

Received a bag of oranges from the old folks in Florida. Citrus is always welcome in the winter months, pink grapefruit, being my favorite.

I made a nice salad with a Moroccan twist. I used a spice called Ras el Hanout, which means "Top of the Shop". It's a lovely blend of cardamom, saffron and cinnamon with some other stuff. A blogger once mentioned to me to "buy the best" Ras el Hanout that I can find, from a reliable source. I mail ordered it from an online spice shop, but never used it!
Now was my chance! I originally bought it for tagines and Moroccan inspired dishes.

I also recommend using Medjool dates because they are plumper, bigger and stickier. Yum.
You have to remove the pits, but it's only a few, no big deal.

Winter Salad of Oranges, Dates & Pistachios:

2 navel oranges
1/4 cup of toasted pistachio meats
1/4 of a red onion, sliced super thin
6 meaty Medjool dates, pitted and cut into quarters
a bag of washed baby arugula
1/4 cup sliced Parmigiano cheese


3 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
1/8 tsp Ras-el-Hanout (substitute a pinch of cinnamon & a pinch of coriander)
pinch of kosher salt
zest of one orange
1/8 or more cup of olive oil

Zest one orange into a bowl and peel the 2 oranges into segments, and then cut the segments in half, so you have pieces of orange.

Add the sliced red onion to the bowl and add the white balsamic vinegar and let rest a few minutes so the vinegar takes the bite out of the onion.

Add the quartered dates and toasted pistachios to the bowl and add the spice and salt. Mix together.
Drizzle w/ olive oil and let sit a few minutes.

Lay out the arugula on a platter and pour the orange date nut mixture over the greens.
Drizzle w/ a little more olive oil if needed.

Garnish with slices of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.



Nisrine | Dinners and Dreams said...

I love dates and pistachios and think they look gorgeous in this salad. Way to brighten up a winter day!

Marine Loves Papi... said...

I have never used Ras-el-Hanout before, but now i feel inspired.

Marine Loves Papi... said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marine Loves Papi... said...

I have never used Ras-el-Hanout before, but now i feel inspired.

Laura said...

Mmm sounds delicious! I've never used Ras-el-Hanout before but I really like the sound of it! And arugula and citrus are some of my favorite salad ingredients... Gotta give this one a try! Thanks for sharing!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I learned something new today, never ever heard of that spice, but it sure sounds like the perfect additon to all the flavors in that yummy looking salad!

The Japanese Redneck said...

Such a pretty salad for a dreary winter day.

Another ingredient I've never heard of or seen. Thanks for the lesson.

Kate said...

Hmmm...learned about a new spice mixture, Ras-el-Hanout. (Sounds like one I would enjoy.) Love the salad ingredients!

lisa is cooking said...

I'm having on a citrus kick right now, so this is perfect timing. Pink grapefruit it hard to beat, but this salad looks pretty amazing!

RSA Online said...

I always say it's the dressings that make the salad and that Ras-el-Hanout mixture sounds very very good ;)

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Do the old folks know you refer to them as the old folks? I just got a sack of Florida oranges and you've given me a great way to use up some of them, rather than just eating them plain.

tasteofbeirut said...

I made a couscous salad using these ingredients once, save for the ras el hanout spice. What a splendid idea to combine it with arugula! Yum.