During the holiday season, we often indulge on rich heavy foods, but sometimes it is nice to add in some lighter fare to balance the palate. Citrus season is upon us and fresh oranges, lemon and limes are plentiful. In salads, I like fresh citrus because it adds a natural sweetness, that boosts the greens and other ingredients. In this recipe for Orange, Pickled Red Onion & Stilton the citrus balances out the pickled red onions and sharp Stilton cheese with a freshness that’s divine.
Pickling is a very simple process of adding freshly sliced vegetables to a pan of boiling water, vinegar, sugar and salt and letting it rest for a few minutes. The red onions slightly absorb the vinegar mixture and the onion flavor mellows, which is nice in a salad. This recipe is light and refreshing, and resembles the flavors of the winter season, delicious this time of year.
1 head butter lettuce
1 head romaine lettuce
1/2 red onion, sliced thinly
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons sugar
2 naval oranges
4 ounces Stilton blue cheese
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoons agave nectar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
1. Remove the lettuce from the core and tear into large bite size pieces. Wash and spin dry. Place the greens in a large serving bowl.
2. In a small pot over medium heat, add the vinegar, 1/2 cup water, salt and sugar. Heat the liquid until boiling and pour into a bowl. Add the sliced onions and let rest, while you prepare the rest of the salad.
3. Slice the top and bottom off of the oranges and set flat on the cutting board. Slice around the perimeter of the oranges to remove the skin. Then, section the oranges with your knife into segments and place them on top of the greens. Squeeze any juice from the oranges over the salad. Drain the onions from the liquid and layer on top of the salad. Remove the cheese from any packaging and crumble into small chunks.
4. In a small jar with fitted lid, add all the vinaigrette ingredients, shake until thickened. Drizzle with a small amount of Vinaigrette and serve the rest with the salad. Enjoy!