And then a salad comes into your life that changes the very core of your belief systems. This Radicchio and Cara Cara Sesame Salad hits all the perfect notes of bitter, sweet, umami, acidic, and savory. I’ve fallen in love with this bad boy. I’ve fallen in love with the winter produce all over again.
I know you may be thinking I’m puffing my chest a bit (I have a propensity for the dramatic), but this salad? It’s delicious. It’s a salad that works for me and my nutritional needs. As I’ve said before, I go with the flow of winter, not against it. This means eating cool season crops and citrus that is plentiful in the quiet, dreary months. I believe there is a reason that crops are seasonal. It means we are supposed to eat them in season. The things our bodies lack in the winter can be found in seasonal produce. So, let’s make meals around them, shall we?
But also, let’s not forget that mac & cheese can be eaten in any season, amiright?
Radicchio is one of my favorite bitter lettuces. I usually prefer it in a balsamic vinegar tossed salad with a drippy soft boiled egg, blue cheese chunks, and a long-smoked tri tip with extra fat PLZ. But, in an effort to make things that are quick/easy/simple/insanely delicious, I’ve come up with a salad that is just as good as the aforementioned.
CHOP – the radicchio to your preferred bite size and some chives to tiny little things.
PEEL – some fresh Cara Cara oranges and section. Feel free to sub blood orange.
TOAST – your sesame seeds, sliced almonds, and allspice.
WHISK – oils, vinegars, salts, honeys, etc.
TOSS – make them a family, stick them in a bowl, and watch it become magic.
TOP – freshly grated parm for the umami WIN.
This salad doesn’t take much. It takes some time in the grocery store to find that small selection of radicchio. It takes a small fry pan to toast and bring the flavors out of the wonderful nutty/seedy/spicey goodness. But, it gives so much in return.
It gives a juicy explosion of Cara Cara orange, a subtly bitter crunch of radicchio, a sweet hit from honey, a warmth from the allspice, and an intensely aromatic taste in the toasted sesame oil. Is there anything better than this after a long and hard day in the office?
Take your aggressions out with a Japanese knife and a bamboo board. Feel your worth in this finished salad and rest easy in your pajamas while you savor a cold bowl of salad and wash it down with a hot cup of green tea.
Radicchio and Cara Cara Sesame SaladPrint Recipe
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1 head of radicchio
- 2 Cara Cara oranges
- 1/4 cup fresh chives, chopped
- 1/4 cup sesame seed oil
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
In a small fry pan, toast the almonds, sesame seeds and allspice over medium heat until golden brown.
Chop the radicchio leaves, fresh chives, and section the Cara Cara oranges. Toss together in a medium bowl. Add the toasted sesame seeds and almonds.
In a small bowl, whisk together sesame seed oil, rice vinegar, honey, ginger, and salt, and pour over the salad. Toss dressing together with salad ingredients, and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.