Our Christmas morning brunch routine has been the same for as long as I can remember: cinnamon buns with stockings, and eggs benedict for breakfast, usually with roast potatoes and fruit salad on the side. About a decade ago, I stumbled upon this recipe, and it quickly replaced our regular mixed chopped fruit. It’s simple, but elegant enough for special occasions.
While segmenting the fruit can be somewhat time consuming, its not terribly difficult, and is the perfect job to give to a house guest that looks like they need something to do.
The resulting salad is bright, refreshing, and has a nice contrast in textures.
I followed the recipe as written for a while, but quickly started tinkering with it, as I never like buying ingredients I only use in one thing (white grape juice and lemon lime soda in this case), so I started using what we did have on hand at this time of year. I often buy a large jug of unfiltered apple juice over the holidays for making mulled cider, as well as lemons and limes (for mulled wine, gin & tonics, the usual holiday necessities), so I just started using those instead. Why use artificial flavourings when you’ve got the real thing? Feel free to experiment with whatever you have available – a splash of sparkling elderflower would be lovely, maybe even some flavoured kombucha. There are no hard and fast rules.
You may want to adjust the sweetness depending on your taste and the kind of marmalade used (I often use my homemade Cranberry Orange Marmalade).
The marinade that’s left after straining and serving the fruit is a flavourful syrup that can be added to sparkling water or wine for a festive holiday cocktail. Waste not, want not!
Pomegranate seeds are a recent addition, and not at all necessary. Use a few for garnish if you happen to have them.
I hope you’ll give this a try, it’s a wonderful addition to any holiday brunch! Please let me know if you do!
A refreshing fruit salad that's elegant enough for special occasions. Prepared the day before, making for quick and easy assembly on the day. Perfect for Christmas morning!
- 8 large oranges, peeled and segmented
- 1/2 cup marmalade
- 1/2 cup sugar (or less, or omit)
- 1 cup unfiltered apple juice/cider (or other sweet, mild flavored juice)
- 2 tbsp fresh lime juice (approx. one lime)
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice (approx. one lemon)
- 3 tbsp slivered almonds (toasted)
- 3 tbsp shredded coconut (toasted)
- pomegranate seeds, for serving (optional)
Combine sugar and marmalade in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and add juices; stir to combine.
Toast almonds and coconut in a large pan over medium/low heat until lightly toasted. Set aside to cool.
Peel and segment the oranges. I do the segmenting over the bowl or storage container they'll be kept in overnight, to catch the orange juice.
Stir marinade into oranges, cover, and refrigerate. Store almonds and coconut at room temperature in a covered container.
In the morning, use a slotted spoon to separate the oranges from the marinade, and arrange nicely in the serving dish. Sprinkle with coconut and almonds, and pomegranate seeds (if using).
The leftover marinade can be strained (or not) and added to sparkling water or wine for a festive holiday cocktail!