This Kale and Cara Cara Orange Salad will brighten up any winter day. With Manchego Cheese, fennel, toasted pumpkin seeds and a Meyer Lemon dressing, it’s gluten-free but bursting with Vitamin C.
I really hope you decide to make this salad. As Denis said today, “This is one to save and serve to company.”
It’s just that good. I had some gorgeous Lacinato Kale on hand and I had been lucky enough to find both Cara Cara oranges and Meyer Lemons the day before. If you haven’t had Cara Cara oranges before, seek them out. They are incredibly sweet and succulent (as they are low in acid) and they have no pits. How cool is that? Especially for kids! Their peel looks very similar to a navel orange but the fruit is slightly more pink, closer in colour to a grapefruit. They are still considered specialty produce as they weren’t available in the produce market until the late 1980’s.
Anyway, that’s what I found out about them on wikipedia. I didn’t have that knowledge tucked away in my brain.
But, this salad. So pretty! Dark green kale, pinky-orange Cara Cara oranges, thinly sliced fennel, a smattering of salty grated Manchego cheese, topped with smoky toasted pumpkin seeds and drizzled with an exquisite citrus vinaigrette made with freshly-squeezed Meyer lemon juice. Mwah!
If you can’t find Cara Caras, use whatever oranges you have on hand. It will still be terrific.
- 1 bunch Lacinato Kale, stems removed and sliced very thinly
- 2 Cara Cara oranges, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup very thinly sliced fennel bulb
- 1/2 cup grated Manchego cheese
- 1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tbsp freshly squeezed Meyer Lemon Juice
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1 small shallot, finely minced
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp honey
- 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
- Prepare the vinaigrette ingredients first to allow the flavours to blend. Whisk all ingredients together and let stand while preparing the salad.
- Toast the pumpkin seeds by heating them gently in a skillet. No oil required. Just heat until you hear them start to pop, then remove the skillet from the heat. They will continue to roast in the hot pan.
- Chop the kale very finely and massage with a little bit of the vinaigrette to tenderize it.
- Slice the oranges and the fennel, grate the cheese and arrange in a serving bowl or in individual dishes. Drizzle with more vinaigrette and top with pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!
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