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Refreshing Fruit Salad with Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing

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Refreshing Fruit Salad with Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing

Elevate your fruit salad to a whole new level with this refreshing and light Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing. Perfect for any occasion, this dressing adds a burst of tangy sweetness and a delightful crunch from the poppy seeds. Whether you’re serving it at a summer barbecue, a picnic, or as a healthy snack, this fruit salad will be a hit with everyone.

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Ingredients:

For the Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons citrus juice (lemon, orange, or lime)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil (optional, for a richer flavor)
For the Fruit Salad:
  • 1 to 2 lbs assorted fruit (such as strawberries, blueberries, grapes, kiwi, mango, pineapple, oranges, and apples)

Instructions:

  1. Prepare the Dressing:
    • In a small bowl, whisk together the citrus juice, honey, poppy seeds, and olive oil (if using). Ensure the honey is fully dissolved and the ingredients are well combined.
  2. Prepare the Fruit:
    • Wash and dry all the fruit.
    • Peel, core, and slice the fruit as necessary. For example, hull and slice the strawberries, peel and segment the oranges, and cut the kiwi and mango into bite-sized pieces.
    • Place all the prepared fruit in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Combine and Serve:
    • Drizzle the prepared dressing over the fruit.
    • Gently toss the fruit to ensure it is evenly coated with the dressing.
    • Transfer the fruit salad to a serving bowl.
  4. Chill and Enjoy:
    • For best flavor, chill the fruit salad in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before serving.
    • Serve the fruit salad cold and enjoy!

Cook’s Tips and Variations:

  • Citrus Juice: Feel free to mix different types of citrus juice for a more complex flavor profile. For example, use a combination of lemon and orange juice.
  • Sweetness: Adjust the amount of honey according to your taste and the sweetness of the fruit.
  • Texture: For added texture and flavor, consider adding a handful of toasted nuts, such as almonds or pecans, to the fruit salad.
  • Herbs: Fresh mint or basil leaves can be finely chopped and added to the salad for an extra burst of freshness.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q: Can I use bottled citrus juice instead of fresh? A: Fresh citrus juice is recommended for the best flavor, but you can use bottled juice in a pinch. Just ensure it is 100% pure juice without added sugars.

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Q: How long will the fruit salad keep in the refrigerator? A: The fruit salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. However, it is best enjoyed fresh.

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Q: Can I make the dressing ahead of time? A: Yes, the dressing can be made up to 3 days in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Give it a good stir before using.

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Q: What fruits work best for this salad? A: Any combination of your favorite fruits will work. Berries, citrus fruits, melons, and tropical fruits like mango and pineapple are all excellent choices.

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Q: How do I prevent the fruit from turning brown? A: Citrus juice in the dressing will help to prevent fruits like apples and bananas from turning brown. Additionally, you can toss these fruits in a little extra lemon juice before adding them to the salad.

Q: Can I use other sweeteners instead of honey? A: Yes, you can substitute honey with agave syrup, maple syrup, or a simple syrup made from sugar and water.

This Fruit Salad with Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing is a vibrant and healthy addition to any meal. The tangy dressing perfectly complements the natural sweetness of the fruit, making each bite a delightful experience. Easy to prepare and endlessly customizable, this fruit salad is sure to become a favorite in your recipe collection. Enjoy the burst of fresh flavors and the crunchy texture of poppy seeds with every refreshing bite!

Extended Tips and Ideas:

  • Seasonal Fruits: Take advantage of seasonal fruits for the freshest and most flavorful salad. In summer, use peaches, plums, and berries. In winter, citrus fruits and pomegranates are excellent choices.
  • Dressing Variations: Experiment with adding a pinch of ground ginger or cinnamon to the dressing for a subtle spice note. A splash of elderflower cordial can add a floral hint.
  • Protein Boost: Add a scoop of Greek yogurt or cottage cheese to make the salad more filling and boost its protein content.
  • Serving Ideas: Serve the fruit salad in hollowed-out citrus halves or melon bowls for a fun and visually appealing presentation.
  • Making it a Meal: Pair this fruit salad with a simple grilled chicken or fish dish for a light, refreshing meal perfect for warm days.

Enjoy this vibrant, healthy, and delicious fruit salad as a refreshing snack, a side dish, or even a light dessert. It’s a delightful way to add more fruits to your diet and savor the natural sweetness and flavors of fresh produce.

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