I consider citrus season a bright spot in a long winter. When everything is brown and wilted, citrus shows up with its bright oranges and yellows.
It’s the one time of year when I gladly say - send my fruit on over from Florida and California. Because let’s be honest, no orange, lemon or grapefruit trees are going to be popping up anytime soon in Kentucky.
Well, except for my dwarf Meyer Lemon trees in the back room. I have full confidence that I may get a lemon from them one day, but they have a long way to go.
An added bonus to citrus season is that if you are lucky, you still have some holiday ingredients hanging around such as fresh cranberries. I was in the mood for a cold grain salad this week, and the combination of tart, fresh cranberries and the sweet juice of an orange seemed the perfect match. The kale and maple syrup were added for good measure.
Wheat Berry Salad with Fresh Cranberries and Orange Maple Dressing
1 cup whole, fresh cranberries
1 cup dry wheat berries, cooked
3 green onions, whites and greens sliced
1 large leaf of kale, stem removed and very thinly sliced
Juice of half an orange
1 ½ tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
Place the cranberries in a small food processor. Pulse until chopped into small pieces; about the size of the wheat berries. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
Add the wheat berries, green onion and kale to the bowl. Toss all ingredients to combine.
In a small bowl whisk together the orange juice, syrup, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Pour dressing over the wheat berry salad. Toss to coat. Serve at room temperature or cold. Serves 4-6.