SPINACH AND BLOOD ORANGE SALAD WITH PECAN CRUSTED GOAT CHEESE
4-6 cups fresh spinach, well washed trimmed and dried.
5 blood oranges
1 small red onion, finely sliced
1/3 cup roasted pecans, finely chopped and roasted
4-6 oz fresh mild goat cheese
Juice from one blood orange
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon coarse ground Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, finely minced
1/3-1/2 cup olive oil
Place all dressing ingredients except oil together in a small bowl or food processor and mix to combine. Slowly whisk or add olive oil until emulsified. Chill until needed.
Cut peel and white pith from remaining 4 blood oranges with a small sharp knife. Cut each orange section free form the membrane and drain in a fine sieve.
Divide goat cheese into 4 equal portions and form into a patty shape. Coat each patty with the roasted chopped pecans and place on a small baking sheet. When ready bake in a preheated 350 oven for about 5 minutes.
Combine spinach, orange sections and onion slices in a large bowl. Add dressing and toss gently. Divide among 4 salad plates and top with the warmed goat cheese.
The blood orange was most likely the result of a mutation that occurred in 17th century Sicily. In most varieties of blood orange even the pulp and skin are slightly sweet, and not bitter.