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I tasted for the first time a Sicilian blood orange salad at a dinner made by some friends from Palermo. It was served as a side dish to a roast beef. I must confess that, at first, I was a bit surprised to see oranges seasoned with olive oil and vinegar. I immediately tasted the salad, dressed up with tasty black olives and I found it delicious for the ability of oranges, that are a little sour, to counter the fat taste of meat. It is a dish that I strongly recommend: fast, healthy, tasty, it gives a touch of colour to your table during the coldest months!
Typically Sicilian, it has certainly been prepared in this simple way for centuries, perhaps since, in the fourteenth century, orange trees were imported to Sicily from the Far East and began to thrive in this beautiful island. The Sicilian blood orange salad can be prepared during the winter and spring, till when scented blood oranges are on sale. There are several variants of this dish: you can add, to taste, a red onion or a fennel or an avocado and a bit of dried oregano. I prefer it with only Sicilian blood oranges. Here is "my" recipe, approved by my Sicilian friends!
Ingredients (it serves 6 people)
3 blood oranges
a handful of large and tasty black olives
4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons of vinegar
Peel the oranges, taking care to remove also the white part under the peel and slice them into thin wheels, about 0.11 inches thick. Remove the seeds and place them on a serving dish. Decorate with black olives. Mix the oil, salt, pepper and vinegar in a separate bowl and pour the sauce over the orange slices. Let it sit for 10 minutes and serve!
A blood orange salad is also delicious as an appetizer.