Salads are clearly a January staple but that certainly doesn’t mean they need to be boring, they don’t even have to include lettuce as far as I’m concerned. In fact, a winter salad should be just as hearty as any other dish you crave this time of year.
This particular (non lettucey combination) is a take off of Pati Jinich’s Ensalada de Navidad or Christmas Salad. Pati uses jicama, thick slices of orange, and beets and I love that combination but I’m also particularly fond of persimmons and just don’t think they get the love they deserve, not to mention, beets and persimmons are an irresistible match.
The orange component appears in a smoky-sweet dressing made from fresh squeezed orange juice, smoked paprika, scallions, and garlic. This dressing should not be reserved simply for this salad but is amazing over warm grains, pan-seared steak, and of course lettuce, if that’s your jam.
Now the pièce de résistance that totally makes this salad are the spicy, maple-coated peanuts that sound lavish but are really nothing more than a go around in the oven. I have a soft spot for Runamok Smoked Maple Syrup which is absolutely divine on these peanuts and goes beautifully with the smoky flavors of the dressing. That being said, I’ve also made them with regular ‘ol Grade A maple syrup and they are still delicious!
Photos by David Mendoza III
A Vegetarian Winter Menu
Beet and Persimmon Salad with Candied Peanuts and Smoked Paprika-Orange Dressing
One More Thing
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