jícama salad

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So along with the fresh garbanzo beans, I picked up a couple of jicama, which I’d eaten before several times but hadn’t ever bought for myself. And then, of course, the next step was to figure out what to do with it.

I look at and save a ton of recipes, from food blogs, from magazines, from cookbooks. But it always seems like whenever I get something without a prior plan, I have trouble coming up with that plan after the fact.

(This is a tale of an impulse purchase gone right, by the way.)

I used the first one in a regular salad and to nibble on with cheese; this is what I did with the second one.

 

Jícama, Orange, and Cilantro Salad
(adapted from Gourmet)

4 navel oranges, peel, pith, and membranes cut away and sections cut free 
1 medium-large jícama (about 12 ounces), peeled and cut into a chunky dice
1/2 small red onion, medium diced
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, or to taste
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 cup toasted cashews, chopped

Combine all ingredients save for nuts and adjust for taste; top with nuts before serving. The salad is good the first day but improves overnight.

It may seem like an odd combination, but all of the ingredients complement each other well, sweet and sharp and juicy and crunchy – it’s definitely something I’ll make again.

The recipe as written called for lemon juice and pine nuts, but I didn’t have the latter and I thought lime juice went better. Feel free to revert back to the original, but I like the changes.

 

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My jícama, which was looking a little perkier before it sat in my fridge for a while.

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Oranges. The best way to clean up oranges for a salad is to supreme them, which I generally don’t bother doing because it always feels like you’re wasting half of the orange. You’re not – ninety percent of what you get rid of isn’t the good part and, if you’re me, you’re reclaiming that other ten percent after prep.

Supreming an orange is simple: chop off the top and bottom so that you can see flesh, then cut away the sides so that you not only get rid of the pith, you cleave off the outer membrane as well:

IMG_3154 From there, you can easily remove each section from the membranous core with v-cuts.

IMG_3157 It’s more wasteful and, at least until you get used to it, more time consuming than just peeling and slicing an orange, but the difference in presentation makes it worthwhile. 

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This, by the way, is not a small red onion. It is a medium onion and half of it is Too Much. Just for the record.

 

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The salad, the next day, over some lettuce and accompanied by a cheese omelet.

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