Citrus is at the peak of its season during Winter in California, and when it starts showing up at the farmer’s market I can’t get enough. This Winer Citrus Vinaigrette is one of my favorite ways to make use of all the seasonal citrus. Okay, and maybe also in citrus cocktails, but more on that another time. This dressing is bright, juicy, a little shallot-y, a little sweet, and it’s so perfect with any kind of leafy green.
This dressing comes together by first letting the zest and juice of fresh orange sit in a bowl with diced shallots and kosher salt. Then, extra virgin olive oil is whisked in and you’ve got yourself a dressing! I love using blood oranges and Cara Cara oranges here, but swap in any kind of grapefruit or another orange variety you love. Make this recipe once on a Sunday and have it ready to go for quick salads all week. I love this vinaigrette on little gem lettuce, kale, arugula, radicchio, or even something super simple like spinach or chopped romaine hearts. It also pairs really nicely with fresh fennel, citrus slices, and avocado for an easy appetizer.
- 2 Teaspoons fresh orange zest (about the zest of one large orange)
- 6 Tablespoons fresh orange juice (about the juice of one large orange)
- 2 Tablespoons diced shallot (1 small shallot)
- Kosher salt
- 6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Optional: splash of apple cider vinegar or pomegranate molasses for more acidity
- Combine orange zest and juice, diced shallot, and a generous pinch of kosher salt in a medium sized mixing bowl. Whisk to combine, and let sit for 10 minutes to macerate.
- Gradually whisk in olive oil until combined (aka: emulsified). You can also do this by shaking up all ingredients in a jar with a tight seal, though whisking is my preferred method!
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
A FEW NOTES ON RIFFS:
- The Citrus: Orange is my favorite here but you can’t go wrong with any sweeter winter citrus variety. My go-tos are Cara Caras and Blood Oranges, and really, any kind of orange will do. Tangerine and grapefruit are also delicious here as well.
- The Shallot: Don’t like shallots? Leave ’em out! Don’t have shallots but have red onion? Use that instead! I also love swapping garlic grated on a microplane in place of shallot here.
- The Oil: Extra virgin olive oil is your friend in this recipe – it lends a welcome grassy and fresh note. If you want to switch it up, the toasted walnut oil from La Tourangelle is tasty. Steer clear of more neutral tasting oils, such as avocado oil, canola oil, or grape seed oil, since we do want flavor from the oil here.
- The Optional Add-Ins: Add a splash of apple cider vinegar for more acidity, pomegranate molasses for more brightness and a hint of sweet, or honey for a bit more sweetness.
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