Joy the Baker

Spinach Feta Blood Orange Salad

January 2, 2012

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My grandmother used to have a house dress, house hair, and house shoes.  She made no apologies for boiling her fresh vegetables half way to kingdom come.  She sat with her Bible at every spare moment.

I… well, I have a house sweater.  It’s big and grey with floppy sleeves and giant buttons.  It’s just a house sweater, unless of course I decide that it can handle a quick trip to the store or a quick meet with a friend.  It really should stay in the house, as beat up and unattractive as it is… but sometimes it’s just too warm and cozy to part with.  I don’t even want to talk about introducing the house sweater to someone that you’re dating.  That’s a whole other beast to tackle.

My grandmother would support my house sweater.  She’d nod in quiet understanding.  She’d also love that I have her Bible on my nightstand, and I read and reread all the bits she underlined in red pen.  This salad?  She would not understand.  It’s entirely too fresh and crisp and… unboiled.  I suppose that’s the difference between her Tennessee blood and my California living.

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Blood oranges are here and I couldn’t be happier.  Every orange is different.  The red tinting can be subtle or totally bonkers.  Beauty fruit.  I’m so into it!

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I combined sweet blood oranges with creamy avocado, salty feta cheese, and crunchy sunflower seeds.

Spinach too.  Fully of flavor and health.  On the real.

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This is the sort of salad that you can eat and feel like you’re indulging in a good life.  Not like you’re on a diet.  Not like you’re depriving yourself of peanut butter cups.  This salad is a treat in itself… and totally justify peanut butter cups for dessert.

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This salad was inspired by a really lovely book.  Tender by Nigel Slater.  It’s like an encyclopedia for vegetables with gorgeous, simple, indulgent recipes for each vegetable.  I love the photographs and recipe lay outs.  Very laid back and personal, but beautifully intentional.  The man knows has a gorgeous respect for food.

Thanks sister!  Major gift!

This recipe is in paragraph form… that means take it easy and enjoy the process.  Just go with it.  Don’t have feta cheese?  Try goat cheese crumbles.  No sunflower seeds?  Toasted walnuts would be lovely.  No blood oranges?  Grapefruit is the way to go!

Spinach Feta Blood Orange Salad

inspired by Tender

Print this Recipe!

Spinach is beautifully matched with citrus and salty feta cheese.

For each person, portion about two handfuls of clean, baby spinach.  Peel and thickly slice a blood orange, or whatever citrus you have on hand.  Catch as much of the juice as you can and pour it back over the salad with a good drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of fresh cracked black pepper.  Toss the spinach with oranges, sliced avocado, a hearty portion of feta cheese crumbles and sunflower seeds.  Serve immediately and enjoy.  


154 Comments Add A Comment

  • What a pretty looking salad! I love both feta cheese and blood oranges

  • I’d pair it with a blood orange cocktail!

  • So beautiful and fresh! No better way to start the new year!

  • I absolutely adore blood oranges, but I’m having the darndest time trying to find them this season. But once I do, this salad is first on the list!

  • My Great Aunt had ‘house money’. Every week she took out $100 for house money and I still have no idea what she used that money for.

  • What a gorgeous presentation! I love everything in this salad and I can’t wait to try it!

  • Hi Joy,
    Looks good! I have not heard the words “house shoes” in a while. I recognized it immediately from living in the South (Florida and Texas) when I was young. Translation for people who don’t recognize these words…..”bedroom slippers!” Isn’t it great the memories we have of our grandparents? Everyone had a family Bible when I was growing up. I have the one that my Mother had now that she is gone. Like you, I treasure it. Did your grandmother write important dates (weddings, dates people were baptized or died) in your family Bible? Mine did and your’s may have, too. I am so happy you treasure her Bible and have it out where you can read it. You will always remember her when you see it. Love the recipe. Love ya, Kim

  • I just happened past blood oranges today and was so happy, last year I was so busy that I missed them! It’s definitely a sign that you just happened to use them in your recipe today…2012 is already amazing!

  • Those blood oranges are stunning. Any excuse to slice into one of those gems is great…and the salad looks wonderful!

  • I love blood oranges so much, and they look PERFECT in this salad!

  • This is most definitely the prettiest salad I’ve ever seen… In. My. Life.

  • Hi joy,

    I have house boots (uggs) which I looove. I always cook in my pyjamas because they’re easy to wash. Haven’t left the house in my boots or pj’s in sometime. :D
    I adore Nigel Slater. I think I need to get my hands on his book. This recipe looks so simple yet quite genius. Yum. Thanks for sharing it.

  • Joy! I JUST MADE – like, 10 minutes ago – a spinach/arugula/goat cheese/dried blueberry/sliced almond/avocado salad, and as I was preparing it, thought “Hmmm, blood oranges should be available sooon!” It scares me how much we think alike sometimes.

    Also, I hope it’s not creepy that I was in Venice last week on vacation with my boyfriend and thought from time to time, “I wonder if I’ll run into Joy…”

    Happy New Year!

  • I love the colours in this salad! So bold and summery!

  • Ooooh this looks amazing! Feta cheese is my favorite. And so are house sweaters. So cozy, it’s totally cool to leave the house in them sometimes!
    Your blog is absolutely wonderful, by the way! :)

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