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Jícama, Avocado, Radish & Orange Salad with Cilantro

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Serves 6 to 8

The cool, crunchy jícama and radishes in this salad make a glorious contrast to the buttery avocado and sweet-tart oranges.

  • 4 oranges
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Kosher salt
  • 5 Tbs. fresh lime juice; more to taste
  • Large pinch cayenne
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small jícama (about 1-1/4  pounds)
  • 8 small red radishes, cut into very thin round slices
  • 5 scallions, dark green tops trimmed; cut diagonally into thin slices
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large ripe but firm avocados
  • 1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves

Finely grate 2 tsp. zest from the oranges and set the zest aside. With a sharp paring knife, slice the ends off the oranges. Stand each orange on one of its cut ends and pare off the rest of the peel in strips, making sure to remove all of the pith. Working over a small bowl, carefully cut the orange segments away from the connective membrane. Squeeze the membranes over the bowl to get any remaining juice.

Put the cumin seeds in a small, dry skillet and toast over medium heat until slightly browned and aromatic, about 1 minute. Remove from the skillet and let cool. Grind the seeds to a fine powder in a mortar and pestle or an electric spice mill.Using a mortar and pestle or the flat side of a chef’s knife, mash the garlic to a paste with a pinch of salt. Put the garlic paste and cumin powder in a small bowl (or keep it in the mortar) and whisk in the 2 tsp. orange zest, 3  Tbs. orange juice (from the bowl of orange segments), the lime juice, and the cayenne. Let the mixture sit for 5  to 10 minutes, and then whisk in the olive oil.

Meanwhile, peel the jícama and it cut into 1/8-inch-thick matchsticks 2 to 3 inches long. In a large bowl, combine the jícama, radishes, and scallions. Season with salt and pepper and toss with about two-thirds of the vinaigrette. Set aside for 5 to 10 minutes to let the flavors mingle.

Just before serving, thinly slice the avocados diagonally. Lay half of the avocado slices in a shallow bowl and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle some of the remaining vinaigrette on the avocado. Add the cilantro and orange segments to the bowl of jícama and toss gently. Taste and adjust the seasoning with more salt, pepper, and lime juice if needed. Put the jícama salad on top of the sliced avocado and tuck the remaining slices of avocado into the salad. Season the top slices with salt and drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette. Serve immediately.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on eight servings; Calories (kcal): 215; Fat (g): 15; Fat Calories (kcal): 135; Saturated Fat (g): 3; Protein (g): 3; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 10; Carbohydrates (g): 21; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2; Sodium (mg): 148; Cholesterol (mg): 0; Fiber (g): 9;

Photo: Scott Phillips

OMG! This salad is so perfect with Mexican dishes... Or just by itself. So refreshing. I made a bed of bib lettuce for the salad to rest on. For the dressing I added more than a pinch of cayenne and a little xtra cumin. Other than that it was by the recipe. This dressing and salad I will make over and over. Just sooo delish!

Excellent salad, great with Mexican food (e.g., enchiladas). We made this first in the dead of winter and couldn't get jicama, so substituted fennel bulb which worked just fine. I also added a bit of butter lettuce just because I like some 'greens' in my salads.

Outstanding salad to accompany spicing ribs or wings. Wonderful contrast of textures supported by a tasty brilliance in the dressing.

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