Fall Pomegranate Avocado Salad with Maple Pistachios

“Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.”  

Jim Bishop

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When I was growing up in Canada’s great white north, every fall my mom would buy me one glorious exotic pomegranate.  I would sit at the kitchen counter with a dish towel to wipe up the inevitable spray and drips that went hand in hand with the consuming of this fruit, and savored every.single.delicious.bite.  I loved it and every fall, I remember this annual treat very fondly when the fruit makes its appearance in the markets.  I am not sure why I only got a single pomegranate but I suspect it must have been very expensive to import them to Northern Ontario and my family was of very modest means.

A few years ago as I travelled through Turkey, imagine my state of wonder to discover pomegrante trees growing everywhere!   Whenever we could, my sister Michelle and I would buy freshly pressed pomegranate juice.  Everywhere in the streets of Turkey’s markets were huge towers of glorious pomegranates with their crimson shells beckoning us as much as the tourist savvy young men hustling to make a lira!  The jewel-like seeds were crushed into a darkly alluring juice, a nectar from heaven. 4 pomegranate would yield a mere 4 oz of juice!  I felt my life expectancy rise everytime I drank one of these amazing juices.

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Now I add pomegranate seeds in many dishes.  Earlier this week I threw together this salad which Prince Charming loved.   I remade it today so I could measure the ingredients and share the “recipe” with you.  I hope you enjoy the layers of flavor and texture of this salad which is as colorful as the glorious fall foliage.

POMEGRANATE AVOCADO SALAD with MAPLE PISTACHIOS

Ingredients:

1 large avocado or 2 small, peeled, pitted and sliced

4 clementine oranges or 4 mini mandarins, peeled and segmented

1/4 c thinly sliced red onion

seeds of 1/2 of a pomegranate, about 1/3 cup

2 heaping tablespoons of mint, chiffonade cut

1/4 c unsalted pistachios

4 T Orange Muscat Champagne vinegar(Trader Joe)

2 T olive oil

1 T maple syrup

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

For the maple pistachios: In a small saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil and sauté the pistachios for about 1 minute until they are golden and you bring out their nutty fragrance.  Toss with the maple syrup, season with a pinch of sea salt and several turns of the pepper mill. Set them on a sheet of parchment to separate them.   Reserve.

ASSEMBLY:

On a rimmed platter, spread out the sliced avocado.  Sprinkle with 3 tablespoons of the orange champagne vinegar.  On top of this,  in this order, spread the sliced onion, then the orange segments, the pomegranate seeds and sprinkle with the chopped mint leaves. Spread the seasoned pistachios across the whole dish, as a final layer.  Taste and add the final tablespoon of oil and/or vinegar, if needed.  I prefer this salad with the kick of citrus and add very little oil as the natural oil of the nuts and their coating seems sufficient.  When eating it you’ll get the contrast of the nutty-sweet pistachios with the tangy orange and avocado by not tossing the whole salad in a vinaigrette.

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Pomegranates are an ancient fruit, native to Iran and considered the fruit of heaven.  I hope you enjoy them in this crunchy fall salad!

An oil inspired by the trip to Turkey, created for my sister

An oil inspired by the trip to Turkey, created for my sister

12 thoughts on “Fall Pomegranate Avocado Salad with Maple Pistachios

  1. Would you believe I have never eaten a pomegranate in my life??? I’ve had the juice (love it!) and the seeds, but I’ve never just sat down and eaten the fruit. Based on your vivid description, it looks like I’ve missed out on quite a treat!

    • Alycia you crack me up! They are messy to eat and I’m the only fan here, but so good for you. There’s even an alcoholic pomegranate liqueur….perfect for making a champagne cocktail! I’m predicting a tablescape in that gorgeous pink it makes :))) in Turkey it would take 4 whole pomegranates to get a tiny glass of pure juice. Loved it.

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  2. Oh my goodness, i just happen to have everything but the orange muscat vinegar, but do happen to have plain old champagne vinegar! What are the chances?? The avocados are ready but my son ate the chips, so I’ve been trying to decide what to make instead of guacamole. The pomegranate was meant for Thanksgiving, but I didn’t get around to adding it to the salad I made, and I have a ton of oranges and tangerines that need to be used! Plus, I just splurged on some good maple syrup, and have a few pistachios hidden away in my bedside table. My son, the one that ate the chips, was at them and I “saved” them lest I not get any of them!

    I never get to use the word serendipitous, but I think I can pull it out for this! 🙂 Thanks for posting such a marvelous combo! I will be making this tomorrow!!

    • I’m so glad!!!! So simple but fresh. You can see my French Canadian coming out with the maple syrup here and there in many of my recipes. Thanks for the feedback! What is your name?

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  3. Pingback: Giving Thanks: Thanksgiving Recipe Roundup | French Gardener Dishes

  4. Pingback: 21 Fall Recipe Round-Up | French Gardener Dishes

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