It started months ago at the grocery store. I was in the produce department sorting through cilantro to find the perfect bunch. Because, of course, I need perfect leaves to chop perfectly so they look perfect in a photo. Adjacent to the cilantro is refrigerated salad dressings. I figured I might as well peruse the selection since I was standing there. One caught my attention and I immediately put it on my list of homemade dressings to make. That is how the first glimmer of a spinach salad with honey tangerine dressing came about.
There was one minor bump in the road. In order to make a tangerine dressing, one must have tangerine juice. It is impossible to get fresh tangerine juice without tangerines and there were none in the store. The plan to make the salad was put aside until the necessary produce was available. Low and behold a little while later a solution came to smooth out the bump in the road.
I happen to enjoy grapefruit juice. I cheat and get the pre-squeezed refrigerated fresh juice. While picking up a bottle of it, I happen to notice some new juices on the bottom rack. Tangerine juice was one of them. Oh yes! A bottle of it went in my cart in a flash. And so did spinach, red onion, green apple, feta cheese, along with everything else I needed for the salad and dressing.
Homemade salad dressings are so easy to make. It’s a simple matter of a ratio of oil and vinegar (or in this case juice) along with a variety of flavorings including honey, garlic, mustard, shallot, and a whole bunch more. You can whisk, shake, or blend it all together. I like the blending method so most of the dressings I make are done in the blender.
Spinach salad with honey tangerine dressing is a light meal. Adding grilled seafood on top is an option if you want more protein. I think salmon or shrimp would be wonderful on it. Or you could turn it into a side salad by serving it in smaller portions. The dressing does have some sweetness to it from honey and tangerine juice. There is a balance of savory from vinegar, garlic, and shallot. As with all homemade dressings, you can adjust the sweet or tang by using more or less of certain ingredients.
Do you enjoy tangerines and the juice? I actually prefer it over orange. I’m so glad I can get the juice now and make prep time even faster for things like this dressing, Tangerine Yogurt Cake, and Blueberry Green Smoothie. Who knows what I’ll use it for next. Stay tuned…
Spinach Salad with Honey Tangerine Dressing
For the honey tangerine dressing:
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 small garlic clove minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoon chopped shallot
- 1/3 cup fresh tangerine juice
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 2/3 cup olive oil
For the spinach salad
- 5 ounces fresh baby spinach leaves
- 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
- 1/2 tart green apple thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup feta cheese crumbles
- 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
For the honey tangerine dressing:
Place mustard, honey, garlic, shallot, tangerine juice, vinegar, salt and pepper in a blender. Blend on high speed until combined.
Turn blender to low speed and slowly drizzle in olive oil.
Pour dressing into serving container. Chill when not serving.
Bring to room temperature if serving after being chilled. Dressing will separate. Shake to blend again.
For the spinach salad:
Place the spinach in a large salad bowl or divide evenly into single serving bowls.
Tops with red onion, apple slices, feta cheese, and toasted pine nuts.
Serve with honey tangerine dressing.
Spinach Salad with Honey Tangerine Dressing is made with green apple, red onion, pine nuts, feta cheese, and tossed with a homemade citrus dressing.