Green almond and orange salad

by Sarah on April 11, 2011

orange and green almond salad

After the Mardi Gras of pink and white blossoms, fuzzy green almonds quietly emerge. For a short time, towards the end of the strawberry season and before the plums, they can be found in outdoor markets around the country. Immature almonds can be eaten in their entirety but the outer layer hardens quickly to protect the developing embryo within. At this stage, the fruit can be pried open with a blunt knife to reveal a nearly liquid seed. That’s the taste of spring.

almond blossoms

green almonds

Green almond and orange salad

2 oranges, sliced into bite sized pieces

2 green almonds, very thinly sliced.

Drop of orange blossom water

Teaspoon of powdered sugar

Mix all the ingredients together and serve immediately since the almonds tend to darken after they are cut. If you want an even stronger orange flavor add a sprinkle of orange zest.

almonds at the souk, outdoor market

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

sandy axelrod April 11, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Your pictures are always so spectacular I just want to dive in and eat them!

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lisaiscooking April 11, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I’ve been curious about green almonds ever since reading the Zuni Cafe Cookbook. I’ve never found them since they don’t grow here in Texas, but I’d love to taste them.

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Yael April 11, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Gorgeous photos!

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Sarah April 11, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Yael, The almond in bloom was taken on our almond blossom field trip, that was great!

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Jodi April 11, 2011 at 2:02 pm

I want to reach in to the last photo and pick up a handful of those lightly furred almonds and roll them around in my palm!

I don’t think I knew you could slice and eat the whole almond at this early stage in its development ~ a new taste to hunt down one day.

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Faye Levy April 11, 2011 at 8:07 pm

This is so beautiful and what a great idea! I often see Persians eating these at the market but when I ask if they use them in recipes, they always say they just eat them plain as a snack.

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Sarah April 11, 2011 at 9:33 pm

That’s how my mom used to eat the fruits, right off the tree when she used to live in a village in Israel.

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Orly @yumivore April 11, 2011 at 9:28 pm

So beautiful! I can practically taste spring!

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Sarah April 11, 2011 at 9:30 pm

Lisaiscooking, Texas is a little bit cooler than Israel and the reason why its tricky to grow them there. Almonds bloom very early, late February-March when there is still the risk of frost in Texas.
Sandy, Jodi, That’s exactly how many people eat them, simply off the tree. The flavor is subtle and refreshing, not sweet like other stone fruit.

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Karen from Globetrotter Diaries April 11, 2011 at 9:36 pm

I’m so glad you posted this recipe. These almonds are all over ethnic markets in LA but I never knew how to use them– thanks!

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Sarah April 11, 2011 at 9:55 pm

Here is an interesting article by Greek food expert Diane Kochilas on other ways to eat green almonds. http://www.zesterdaily.com/cooking/476-green-almonds-and-jam

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Mimi April 12, 2011 at 2:12 pm

Beautiful, romantic photos…

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Sarah April 12, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Thanks Miriam

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Liz April 12, 2011 at 4:19 pm

I also hadn’t ever seen anyone eating the green part, until today. Whenever I asked, people at markets always told me you don’t eat the green part. Interesting recipe.

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Sarah April 12, 2011 at 9:21 pm

As I mentioned the green part tends to harden quickly and perhaps why the vendors said it wasn’t eaten. There is an interesting link to a cooked version of green almonds below. I have also seen it used in tart salads dressed in olive oil and lemon juice (think a recipe by Gil Hovav).

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Turkey's For Life April 14, 2011 at 12:40 am

Fethiye market is full of unripe almonds (çağla) at the moment. This salad looks perfect for spring. I was thinking about pickling some this year – someone told us they were really nice pickled?! We shall see…
Julia

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Nanette April 14, 2011 at 4:05 am

I’ve never tasted green almonds as I’ve not been able to find them here in Melbourne.

Anissa Helou was the first person to bring them to my attention a couple of years ago, and now this tempting, vibrant salad, I really am living in the wrong hemisphere!

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Sarah April 16, 2011 at 12:12 am

I know Australia grows lots of olives and I am pretty sure almonds as well. It’s surprising that there are no green almonds even in Middle Eastern stores in Australia. You really should visit this area in spring, it is the prettiest time of year.

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usha April 19, 2011 at 4:21 am

Lovely photos. Must try the salad when green almonds are in season. Thanks Sarah.

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orly @yumivore April 17, 2013 at 1:23 pm

in the mood for green almonds, dropping by for a nibble

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Sarah April 17, 2013 at 9:06 pm

Orly, Loads of green almonds at the outdoor markets now. I want to try a few new recipes this year.

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