This salad is so easy, and the dressing so fragrant and unusual it will leave you guests wondering what it is. No one ever guesses, make it and see if you friends and family can smell the magical ingredient.

Mejdool Dates, Orange & Roasted Pine Nut Salad with orange blossom dressing

Serves 4 to 6 as part of a traditional salad course or best served with a white fish or lamb too or just on its own.


500g Fresh Baby Spinach

3 Naval Oranges


2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 Tablespoon orange flower water

2 Tablespoons caster sugar

2 Tablespoons reserved orange juice

Pinch of salt

½ Teaspoon ground Ceylon cinnamon, plus more for dusting

100g Pine Nuts (Toast these in a pan without oil)

  • 1.Wash the Spinach and separate into leaves, discarding the tough outer ones. Drain, wrap in kitchen paper and chill until needed.
  • 2.Peel and segment the oranges as described on page 62; reserve 2 tablespoons of the juice for the dressing. Cover and keep chilled.
  • 3.To make the dressing, mix the lemon juice, sugar, salt, cinnamon, orange flower water and orange juice in a bowl, blending well. Taste; the dressing should be sweet so add more sugar if necessary.
  • 4.Just before serving, shred the Spinach and arrange in a glass-serving dish. Pour over the dressing and toss. Arrange overlapping segments of orange around the edges, then sprinkle the salad with the chopped and dust with cinnamon.

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