a little short today, as there has been a small bout of chaos churning in the midst of our raw and algid weather. no sooner did we see the last of the snow melt did it come again swiftly, without hesitation. and once more, just as quickly as the eye can blink, we are blanketed again beneath an alabaster canopy. i feel a calm wash over me now when the snow falls – it wasn’t always this way, but i recognize it for what it is now. there’s a stillness the world offers forth during periods of heavy snow, the tremble of the heart the only thing softer.
i’ve been filling my days with equal parts hot brothy compositions, admittedly a few rather carbohydrate kissed burrows beneath the snow, thick and chewy yeasted breads, and recently a resurgence in celebrating the essence of winter in salad form.
i’m sharing a rather strong case for such today, one that’s captivated me multiple times in the past week. if you find winter the bleakest mistress, rekindle your relationship now within these tangles.
- ¼ cup walnuts
- 2 large blood oranges
- 1 large fennel bulb, halved lengthwise, cored, and sliced very thin (reserve fronds)
- 1 small red onion, sliced thin lengthwise
- ¾ cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
- 4 tsp olive oil
- 1 tbl minced shallots
- small pinch of salt and pepper
- in a skillet over medium heat, dry-toast the walnuts, cool, and coarsely chop.
- cut the blood oranges into segments: begin by slicing off the top and bottom. stand the orange upright and cut downward, top to bottom, to remove the peel and white pith. working over a bowl, cut between the white membranes of the fruit to release the segments. in a separate, smaller bowl, squeeze any remaining fruit to reserve the juice.
- in a large bowl combine the blood orange segments with the fennel, red onion, and olives.
- whisk together reserved blood orange juice (I had about 4 tsp), olive oil, minced shallots, salt and pepper. serve salad garnished with walnuts and reserved fennel fronds; drizzled with dressing.