Tangy grapefruit and blood oranges are paired with peppery arugula, tiny pearls of quinoa, creamy avocado, and crunchy walnuts for an easy, healthy, and delicious breakfast salad.
Winter, it seems, is a time of year many of which many of us would rather sped by, transporting us forward to longer days and balmier weather. I, too, prefer warmer days and later sunsets, but lately I’ve been trying to, ‘bloom where I am planted,’ as my mother would say, and take in the grace of winter.
We’ve had a lot of snow in Stockholm lately, and I’ve walking to work and back as it’s just too treacherous for me to brave biking at the moment. The walk takes me a little more than twice as long as biking would, which gives me a good amount of time to gear up for and settle down from my day at the office. It’s also given me ample time to listen to podcasts – 40 minutes each way – something I don’t do on my bike as I need to be considerably more attuned to the traffic around me.
Here’s what I’m listening to these days:
- The Vinyl Cafe (which simultaneously warms my heart and makes me homesick)
- The Savage Lovecast (I learn so much about relationships from this one. Lots o’ sex talk, so beware if that’s not your thing.)
- The Joy the Baker Podcast (silly, fun, inspiring)
- The Art of Simple Podcast (am forever learning interesting things)
- Serial (dyyyying for the 2nd season of this one!)
- This American Life (so many amazing stories)
- Radio Lab (very cool sciency stuff)
- Spilled Milk (by Molly of Orangette – fun explorations of food)
- Invisibilia (this one is new, but so far really good)
- Dear Sugar (love me some Cheryl Strayed! Also not for kids…)
What are y’all listening to these days? Any favourites?
When the snow clears up and I get back on my bike I’ll miss this time. I’m already brainstorming ways to get more walking and other podcast friendly fitness into my day once that happens.
Citrus fruit is, I think, another one of winter’s graces. It comes along at what some might say is the bleakest time of year, bright in colour and flavour both, and with substantial zing to it. Although in this globalized world we can find citrus pretty much all year round, blood oranges make a fleeting appearance at this time of year, and it’s well worth scooping them up while you can.
In the summer I posted a balmy breakfast salad, so I thought that the winter called for one with slightly more oomph. I’ve added quinoa, walnuts, and avocado, all of which help make this salad into a meal, adding a complex carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats.
The blood oranges and grapefruit are segmented over a bowl to catch the juices, which then becomes the only dressing this salad needs. Other than cooking the quinoa – which can be done far in advance – it’s a simple matter of slicing and tossing to get a delicious, light, yet satisfying winter breakfast salad on your table.
PS – if you’re wondering how to go about segmenting your citrus fruit, this is how.
Winter citrus is an excellent source of vitamin C. It is also a great source of carotenoids; a pre-curser to vitamin A. Dietary fiber, potassium, and vitamin B1 round out this nutritional powerhouse. Ruby red, pink grapefruits, and blood oranges also contain lycopene (good for your prostates, fellas!). They also contain pectin, which is a form of soluble fiber that has been shown to slow down the development of atherosclerosis and reduce blood levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol.
- 1 cup cooked and cooled quinoa (from ½ cup uncooked)
- 2 medium blood oranges
- 1 red grapefruit
- 1 avocado
- 50g (about 2 cups) arugula, washed and dried
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- ¼ cup torn mint leaves
- Start by cooking the quinoa if it hasn't been cooked already. Place ½ cup quinoa in a small pot with ¾ cup cold water and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Fluff the quinoa with a fork and spread it out on a plate to cool quickly if necessary.
- Using a sharp knife, slice the ends from the citrus fruit, then slice down the sides to completely remove the peel and any pith.
- Segment the citrus over a large bowl to catch the juices (this will become the dressing) and drop the segments into the same bowl.
- Add the quinoa to the bowl - it will soak up a bit of the liquid - then add the arugula and toss well.
- Chop the avocado into bite-sized chunks and toss with the citrusy salad.
- Spread the salad onto a plate or serving platter, and scatter with walnuts and mint leaves.
- Serve immeditely.