Cucumber and Orange Salad
This simple cucumber and orange salad was inspired by something I ate at a farm-side restaurant outside Barcelona years ago.
I was on a very-low-budget European tour with a girlfriend in 1999 and one of the many many many pickles we found ourselves in on that trip included the time my entire purse — passport, travelers checks, driver’s license — was stolen on a train between France and Spain.
Fortunately, we have a family friend from Barcelona, Jose María, whom I contacted as soon as we were off the train and he helped me find the consulate, get a new temporary passport, get reimbursed for stolen checks, and he put us up in a hotel! What a saint! (The hotel turned out to be haunted, but it made for yet another scary/great story from that trip.)
After we got settled, he drove us out to Lleida to see some huge Roman aqueducts and have lunch on a farm. I guess farm restaurants are pretty common in Spain but I’d never seen anything like it. A stone room with a few tables, full of hungry people, surrounded by acres of farmland. There was no menu; you just ate what they put on the table.
The details are fuzzy, but there was a cucumber and orange salad; gazpacho; house-cured anchovies and olives; and my first taste of the famous melon-and-ham combination was had at that table. There was sangría, too, which we were allowed to drink since we weren’t in the ol’ U.S. of Prohibitionist A.
Anyway, there’s so much more I could say about that trip but I’ll save it for another post. Here’s my rendition of the cucumber and orange salad we had at that beautiful place. It is delicious along with grilled meats or fish; or chop the ingredients smaller and use as a relish for beans and rice.
Cucumber and Orange Salad
- Yield: 4 1x
1/2 English cucumber (or 4 Persian cucumbers)
3 small Naval or CaraCara oranges or tangelos
3 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon salt
fresh ground black pepper
Cut the cucumber in quarters lengthwise (or in halves if using small Persian cucumbers) then cut into thin slices. Place in a large bowl.
Peel the oranges and dice, removing seeds as you go. Add to bowl.
Add minced parsley, onion, salt and pepper and toss gently.
Let rest 10 minutes before serving or refrigerate up to a few hours.
This salad goes great with avocado, too! Not as “Spanish” but still delicious — just dice an avocado and add it before serving
- Calories: 42
Sounds delicious, but is there no dressing component? I’m sure the oranges and cucumber provide enough moisture, but shouldn’t there be an addition of some fat or acid, such as olive oil or orange juice?
And come to think of it, your suggestion of adding avocados would also do the trick. I’ll make it both ways and see what I like best. BTW, while I enjoy your podcasts, I do miss the cooking videos. Besides providing great recipes and instruction, they were damn funny.
The dressing is the juice from the oranges and the herbs. I don’t miss the oil but if you feel the need, you can add some
This was my experience too. No oil needed. Delicious salad!!
Just made this following the link from your arroz con pollo, which I am making tonight. The salad is chilling in the fridge. It looks nice. I misread my list and got 3 persian cucumbers instead of 4, but that looks to be quite enough.
Salad seems pretty moist without the addition of any dressing and I don’t miss the oil either. Wasn’t difficult to prepare except for the part of getting that first peel spot on the orange. Happy with this fresh recipe!
Thank you for the idea I order from Imperfect Foods and it takes some time for me to get through it.