So long are those days of summer where just about everything is in season. I have really been missing garden fresh zucchini, freshly picked berries (especially strawberries) and tomatoes straight from the vine lately. But up here in Canada, we can’t really do much about it but import our foods from the south during the winter. Of course with imports, the quality of the food can vary greatly and I find that most vegetables and fruits just don’t taste quite right. That is, except for citrus fruits!
Citrus is my go to fruit during the winter months since it is in peak season and tastes so light andrefreshing; it is a great change of pace from eating those hearty winter comfort foods. Plus, all the vitamins keep you from getting a cold as well! The citrus can also really stand the long trip up into Canada too as the thick peels keep the fruit fresh in its own natural packaging.
Now I have tried many variations on citrus salads before, but I’ve mainly stuck to using navel oranges, blood oranges, tangerines, clementines, and grapefruit in my recipes. I’m not the biggest pomelo fan, nor do I want to be biting into a huge chuck of lemon or lime- although they do look pretty. And I also don’t get all weird by adding onions, fennel or olive oil… I really just don’t like how they can overpower the fresh citrus flavours.
So in this recipe for Citrus & Mint Salad, I keep things light, refreshing and sweet. I like to simply slice up my citrus and arrange it on a serving plate. Then, I add some freshly chopped mint leaves, a few chopped almonds and a drizzle of maple syrup. The mint really gives the salad a refreshing lift while the almonds add a crunch, but not too much flavour. The maple syrup also adds just that little bit extra sweetness that the citrus may need, depending on how sour or tart they may be.
If these pictures have got your mouth drooling, pick up some citrus at the market and make this tasty Citrus & Mint Salad this winter!