Its winter here. ITS FREEZING COLD. I was finding myself quite sad as I scrolled (on Instagram) through lots of beautiful pictures of tropical fruit and watermelon from all the people I follow in Australia and Hawaii. At the moment, we in California are experiencing a cold snap that is out of character for these parts. My baby grapefruit tree that I planted this summer is dead, along with almost all my lettuces, ginger, snap peas, and most everything else in my winter garden. So bummed. I need to figure out some indoor gardening. Anyways, I was just really needing some vibrant color in my food.
I came across a recipe in an old Bon Appetit for a Granny Smith apple vinaigrette that looked interesting. I made it, but decided it definitely needed a little punch to it. Enter herbs! Parsley, cilantro, tarragon, thyme-any herb you desire would probably be good with this. I chose to use cilantro because of the salad I used it on. Herbs also offer TONS of health benefits. They are loaded with minerals and micro-nutrients, anti-oxidants and detoxing qualities. Cilantro chelates and binds with heavy metals in your body and carries them out of your digestive tract.
My salad was everything colorful- orange slices (pith cut away and oranges cut crosswise), watermelon radishes from the garden (or your local farmers market), pomegranate arils, and cilantro. Sometimes I forget just how much colorful produce is in the winter. I am a huge believer in making food look beautiful. If its beautiful, it will get eaten, especially by children. I’m pretty sure that’s why both my children love almost all fruits and veggies.
Anyways, the dressing recipe! Makes about 1 and 1/4 cups.
1 chopped Granny Smith apple, cored but unpeeled
1/4c raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar
1T fresh lime juice + 1t lime zest
1/4 parsley, cilantro, or combination of whatever herb you desire
1T minced shallot
1/2t raw sugar (omit if desired)
1/4c avocado* or other oil, adjust to how oily you like it (you could probably omit it too if you follow a low-fat diet)
Purée apple, apple cider vinegar, and lime juice + zest in a blender, occasionally scraping down sides of blender with a spatula, until smooth. Strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl, pressing down on solids with spatula to extract all juice; discard solids. Return to blender and pulse with herbs, shallot and sugar. Whisk in oil until well blended. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Some of my ombre watermelon radishes that I used in the salad: (aren’t they just gorgeous!)
I used this as a dressing on my citrus salad, to dip my cucumber rolls in, and also on my green salad later that night. It was fresh and simple and didn’t overpower any of the flavors in the salad. Hope you enjoy as much as I did!
*I get my avocado oil at Costco and i love it! It has a totally neutral taste, is cold-pressed, and it withstands high temps without oxidizing and burning unlike olive and other oils. Coconut oil does the same thing too but it has a decidedly coconutty tropical taste which is great but not in this dressing.