This springtime salad recipe is made up of thin slices of bright pink watermelon radishes, marinated in blood orange vinaigrette and tossed with fresh arugula , cilantro, avocado, and a sprinkling of salty feta.
I stepped lightly through the spongy grass, picking up each foot carefully and placing it gingerly, testing how the earth will give before putting my full weight behind it. We were inspecting the fruit trees, assessing the graft point of the cherry, looking at the thin strip of bark torn from the base of the honeycrisp that has exposed the green pulpy flesh below.
Friday the ground was covered in a fresh blanket of white, and yesterday the kids were biking with t-shirts on, the small of their backs peeking out as the tails flapped behind them as they pedaled past. I made my way outside without a coat, arms wrapped tightly against my thin sweater to trap the heat. The windows were open, furnace off as we boiled sap to syrup, and the smell of wet earth mixed with the spring air.
Spring is here. It’s creeping in beneath the mud. It’s hidden under piles wet leaves that cover the garden. It’s alive under the death that hides it still. Soon there will be tiny buds, small signs of life, and the soaked ground will slowly shift to green again.
This salad is an ode to the transition: a combination of winter citrus and the first spring greens. It’s a marriage of contrasts: peppery arugula and fresh cilantro, salty cheese and creamy avocado, vibrant watermelon radishes. It’s the promise of a shifting season.
I walk outside into the sunshine and whisper to the world: soon, soon, soon.
Watermelon Radish and Arugula Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette
- For the vinaigrette:
- 2 tablespoons blood orange juice (or other citrus)
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar like pinot noir
- 1 shallot, minced
- ½ teaspoon flaked sea salt
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- For the salad
- 5-6 cups of arugula
- 2-3 watermelon radishes thinly sliced, about ¾ cup
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup crumbled feta or goat cheese
- In a small jar combine the blood orange juice, white wine vinegar, minced shallot, and salt. Whisk or shake lightly. Add in the olive oil while whisking, or add and cover and shake the jar until combined.
- In a shallow bowl, combine the thinly sliced radishes and 2 tablespoons of the vinaigrette. Allow to marinate for at least 10 minutes, but this can be done ahead and stored in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
- Before serving, place the arugula, cilantro and the marinated radishes together with the remaining dressing. Toss to coat.
- Garnish the salad with avocado slices and feta. Serve.
Another month means it’s time for Eat Seasonal hosted by Becky of The Vintage Mixer. As spring starts to take hold around us, take a moment to see what we’re doing with this months’ bounty, and be sure to follow along using #eatseasonal.
Roasted Asparagus and Brussels Sprout Panzanella Salad from Floating Kitchen
Strawberry and Preserved Lemon Lassi from Simple Bites
Asparagus & Feta Cheese Crustless Quiche from Cookin’ Canuck
Roasted Vegetable Asiago Fettuccine Alfredo from Completely Delicious
Crispy Parmesan Asparagus Fries with Lemon Greek Yogurt Dip from Flavor the Moments
Baked Thai Beef Stuffed Artichokes from Climbing Grier Mountain
Pappadew Pepper Cauliflower Hummus from Kitchen Confidante
Lentil, Avocado, and Radish Salad from Letty’s Kitchen
Tuna Salad with Pickled Habeneros from Project Domestication
Kiwi Lime Sherbet from The Vintage Mixer
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage from FoodieCrush