Recipe: Wilted Spinach Salad with Oranges, Radishes, and Vinaigrette

Wilted Spinach Salad with Oranges, Radishes, and VinaigretteMore than 1 million home cooks rely on Cook’s Illustrated magazine to provide trusted recipes that work, honest equipment reviews and ingredient taste tests, and time-saving kitchen tips.  Published by the hosts of America’s Test Kitchen television series, Cook’s Illustrated is known for an almost fanatical approach to creating the best recipes for the home cook’s favorite foods.  To do this, they test every recipe 20, 30, sometimes up to 100 times in their own 2,500 square foot test kitchen where they make the mistakes so you don’t have to.  They also test and recommend which kitchen equipment is the best to use, which supermarket ingredients really make a difference and which techniques work best for the home cook.  And because Cook’s Illustrated is advertising free, you can trust their objective ratings to identify what products are worth your money and which to avoid. Subscribe to Cooks Illustrated here, or sign up for the Perfectly Plated Sweepstakes for the chance to win $5,000 in merchandise from Ballard Designs.

For a wilted spinach salad recipe that would give us a not-too-greasy dressing and spinach with a slight but satisfying crunch, we cut back on the usual 4:1 ratio of oil to acid and added the lemon juice once the oil and other ingredients had been heated to maintain brightness. To avoid overly wilted spinach, we used a mere ¼ cup of dressing for 6 cups of greens.

Recipe: Wilted Spinach Salad with Oranges, Radishes, and Vinaigrette
Serves: 4
To cut neat orange sections free of membrane and pith, slice off the peel and pith using a very sharp paring knife and following the contour of the fruit. Then, holding the orange over a bowl and working section by section, slip the knife between the membrane and section and slice to the center. Turn the blade and slide it along the membrane on the second side of the section to completely free the section.
  • 5 ounces baby spinach (about 6 cups)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • ¼ teaspoon grated orange zest and segments from 2 medium oranges
  • ¼ teaspoon table salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice from 1 lemon
  • 4 medium radishes, grated on large holes of box grater (about ⅓ cup)
  1. Place spinach in large bowl. Add oil, shallot, orange zest, salt, pepper, and sugar to small skillet and cook over medium heat until shallot is slightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add lemon juice; swirl to incorporate. Pour warm dressing over spinach; add orange segments and grated radishes, and toss gently to wilt. Serve immediately.

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