Oranges aint my bag. Bananas and apples you can grab and go, no napkins, plates or tissues needed. But for someone that spends half their lunchtime spilling couscous over their office desk, oranges are never an obvious choice.
That is, except for blood oranges, which have got to be some of the most beautiful fruit in season right now. I love that supermarkets are afraid to call them blood oranges, I love that surprise when they get mixed up in the fruit bowl with regular oranges and I love how their colour seeps on to everything.
This recipe is inspired by Bon Appetit, although I decided to do away with the red onion- preferring to just focus on the delicious aniseed taste of the fennel against the earthy beetroot and tang of citrus. I added quinoa and bulgar wheat to make this into a huge lunch, which was easily enough for two.
1 orange orange, peeled and cut into segments
3 blood oranges, 2 peeled and cut into segments, 1 for juicing
1/2 fennel bulb, thinly sliced lengthways
Couple beetroots, washed and peeled
Quinoa, bulgar wheat or couscous
Preheat the oven to 200 degress celsius. Slice the beetroot into discs and place in an oiled tray. Cover in foil, and roast in the oven for around 40 minutes. Check after 30 minutes to see how they are getting on.
Meanwhile, prepare the oranges and raw fennel, remembering to keep everything separate until ready to plate up as the oranges and the beetroot will dye everything they touch.
Mix the juice of one blood orange with a few tablespoons of oil, and some seasoning to make a dressing. When the beetroot is almost done, prepare the quinoa or bulgar wheat, drain and set aside to plate up.
Once the beetroot is ready, begin to assemble the salad. I started with a base of quinoa to soak up all the juices- then layered on the fennel, beetroot and oranges, along with the salad leaves and salad dressing. You can use the green fennel tops to add extra flavour to the salad, along with some final seasoning. Messy yes, but bloody tasty too!