Orange Salad with Olives and Mint

MAKES 4 SERVINGS • PREP TIME: 20 minutes • COOK TIME: Not applicable

One of the great things about traveling is that it gets you out of food ruts. When you’re in a different part of the country, or of the world, it’s hard to ignore local fare. When an eighty-year-old nonna puts a strange salad in front of you, what are you going to say—“No?” I remember the first time I saw this salad in Italy. My initial reaction was, “Oranges with cracked pepper? Really?!” And yet this combination, and another one I saw with oranges and olives, really kicked up an incredible sweet-salty mouth pop that was impossible to ignore. Clearly the combo left an impression, because I’ve reprised it here with my own touch, adding almonds and mint. Maybe it was more than an impression; let’s call it inspiration—just the type of culinary experience that primes the pump of creativity.

4 cups tightly packed baby arugula or mixed greens
2 oranges, supremed (see Cook’s Note)
12 pitted kalamata olives, rinsed and sliced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
4 tablespoons Orange Pomegranate Vinaigrette
2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
Freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled (optional)

Put the arugula, oranges, olives, and mint in a large bowl and toss gently to combine. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the top and toss again. Scatter the almonds, a few generous grinds of black pepper, and the goat cheese over the top.

VARIATIONS: Substitute toasted walnuts for the almonds. Use a variety of oranges, such as Valencias, blood oranges, or Tangerines.

COOK’S NOTE: “Supreme” is such a cheffy term. It means cutting the skin and the membrane away from the segments of a citrus fruit. Using a sharp paring knife, trim the bottom of the orange to create a flat surface. Place the orange with the flat surface on your cutting board and trim off the remainder of the skin and white pith, by curving your knife downward in the shape of the fruit’s natural shape. Then, segment by segment, slice to the left and right of each membrane, freeing the flesh of each segment from the membrane.

Another option is to pare away the skin and white pith, and slice the oranges in circles.

Reprinted with permission from The Healthy Mind Cookbook Copyright © 2015 by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson, Ten Speed Press, a division of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA.

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