Recipe of the month: Baby Spinach salad with Mandarin Oranges and Red Onions

When my mom walked up to me with a huge bag of spinach, excitedly telling me how cheap it was and that she planned to make Spinach Cream Sauce, asking me if I’d eat it… I answered just as excitedly that there was absolutely no chance I would. I don’t like spinach (or other vegetables for that matter) once boiled.
But then, you could’ve almost seen a light bulb over my head lit up!

Last Thanksgiving in Sicily, I had the opportunity to sample a lot of yummy American and Italian food. One of my very favorites was the Baby Spinach salad with Mandarin Oranges and Red Onions.
Just like
Pineapple Chicken, I wouldn’t have thought to mix these three together and have them result in such a flavorful dish.

I immediately searched for the recipe for this salad, and as great as it seemed, I made some substitutions here and there for the dressing.
So here’s my adapted version of
Rachael Ray’s Baby Spinach salad with Mandarin Oranges and Red Onions.

page spinach mandarin onions salad

Baby Spinach salad with Mandarin Oranges and Red Onions

7 cups baby spinach 
2 cups mandarin oranges, drained
1 cup chopped red onions 
5 tablespoons
Orange Syrup
1 teaspoon orange peels (leftover from when making the syrup)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
Salt and pepper

Arrange spinach leaves on a large platter or individual salad plates. Top with mandarin orange sections and chopped red onion.

Whisk together the orange syrup, orange peels and balsamic vinegar. Stream EVOO into dressing while continuing to whisk.

When you are ready to serve, pour the dressing over the salad and season with salt and pepper.

Bon appétit! :)

PS: Not to brag or anything (okay, maybe just a little), but I impressed a chef with this salad! *feels all proud of her cooking expertise*

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12 Responses to “Recipe of the month: Baby Spinach salad with Mandarin Oranges and Red Onions”

  1. When I lived in Sicily – this was one of my favorite salads! I never liked spinach cooked until I made it myself. I much prefer it WILTED. If it’s over cooked, it’s not very goo, but slightly cooked is delicious!

    …and this salad is fantastic!

    • Sooo exciting to have someone comment here first who also tried this salad and loved it (not to mention lived in Sicily) :)
      Meanwhile I found a recipe for how I’ll now eat spinach if it’s cooked, but that’s for another recipe of the month. Thank you so much for dropping by, Ann, and especially for the help a little while ago with my question about matching this salad with my dish *hugs*

  2. Spinach salad with oranges and red onions is a favorite of mine as well and one that I like to fix when having company. The guests always have a funny look on their face when first seeing onions and oranges but have a big smile on their face when they are finished.

    • You’ve nailed it, that was my reaction exactly when I first saw this salad at my friend’s house in Sicily and then was charmed after trying it. Can’t believe I completely forgot about it until now…
      Wow, wonderful to see already two people who love this salad! I’m just grateful it turned out well from the first time around, or I’d have had to prepare something else in a hurry ;)

  3. Love it but can’t do the red onion. I would like this with leeks!

  4. Awesome, so many vitamins in this simple salad. Looks amazing!

  5. Oh, yum!! This looks delicious. I love anything with mandarins and red onions in it. I’m not a huge fan of spinach salads, but I know Brian would be VERY happy if I made this. And with the dressing having the citrus flavor (which I love) plus the Balsamic vinegar (which we both love) I would probably enjoy the spinach leaves more than usual.

    I’ve just bookmarked this one in my recipe folder. Thanks!

    • Like I said, I don’t care for spinach all that much, but ate seconds from this salad and it’s wonderful with the adaptations I made too. Let me know how you both liked it, I’m already so curious to hear about it!

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