On New Year’s Day my friend Teri texted me a photo of her “Boxing Day salad,” a mix of blood oranges, arugula, shaved fennel, thinly sliced red onion and pomegranate seeds.

“Fresh and bright,” she wrote. “Nice way to wrap up that holiday blitz!” So true, I thought. Like many, I found myself on January 1st needing a break from the booze and the cheese and the sweets that abound at every turn during the last six weeks of the year. Shortly after seeing Teri’s photo, I made my way to the grocery store in search of winter citrus and greens. Nothing sounded more refreshing or perfect than that very salad at that very moment. I made the salad for dinner that evening, and I’ve made it a number of times since. It’s nice aside soup or really any wintry dish, but it also can stand alone with the addition of a little protein. I’ve been pulling leftover roasted chicken, tossing it with the greens and fennel, and calling dinner done (with a hunk of bread on the side, of course). Incidentally, I made this on Instagram Stories, and someone messaged me saying her family makes this salad all the time with the addition of salty black olives. The combination of blood oranges, fennel, pomegranates, and parmesan (or Pecorino) is a classic Sicilian salad, and the addition of black olives is a variation of the dish. Depending on your preferences, change up the contents as you like. And if you really can’t get behind fennel, thinly sliced endive works beautifully, too.

This chicken is one of those simple weeknight dishes that will blow you and your lover away! The creamy mustard sauce is out of control, knock your socks off good. In fact, I grabbed a spoon after we ate and just went to town on the rest of the pan sauce. No shame here!

This French Chicken with Creamy Mustard-White Wine Sauce is also a great dish for the holiday season to impress your guests (you’ll just have to make a lot more of it). It’s just fancy enough but simple to create — and a total crowd pleaser! So grab a bottle of white wine, pour yourself a glass and make your lover or friend a fabulous meal and tell them how much you care about them. Eat, laugh, enjoy and be happy!


  • 1 to 2 shallots minced to yield 1/4-1/3 cup
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 to 3 oranges (count on 1 orange per person)
  • flaky sea salt such as Maldon
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 to 4 ounces arugula
  • 1 head fennel
  • Parmigiano Reggiano
  • freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • Instructions

  • In a small bowl, combine the shallots, salt, and vinegar. Set aside while you peel the oranges.
  • Slice off the end of each orange. Squeeze the juice from each end into the bowl of shallots and vinegar. Working with one orange at a time, stand it on its flat end. Use your knife to slice down around the orange to remove the skin. Hug the flesh as you slice—it’s better to lose some flesh in the rind than to have pith clinging to the flesh. Squeeze the rinds into the bowl of shallots and vinegar to extract any juice. Repeat until you’ve peeled all of the oranges. (Video guidance in Instagram Stories.)
  • Working with one orange at a time, turn it on its side and slice down crosswise to create 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange the oranges on a platter. Season with flaky sea salt.
  • Using a fork, whisk the olive oil into the dressing—it will not be emulsified. Taste. Adjust seasoning with more salt if necessary or more oil for a little less bite. Drizzle a few spoonfuls of dressing over the oranges.
  • Place the greens and thinly sliced fennel into a large bowl. Drizzle with a few spoonfuls of the dressing. Toss lightly to coat. Taste. Adjust with more dressing or salt to taste.
  • Pile the greens on top of the oranges. Use a peeler to shave Parmigiano Reggiano over top. Crack pepper to taste over top. Serve with knife and fork.
  • Store extra dressing in a jar in the fridge or at room temperature if your kitchen is cool. Shake or whisk well before using.
  • for the cauliflower puree:

  • Meanwhile, while the chicken is cooking, add cauliflower florets into a saucepan with chicken broth, creamer, salt, pepper and thyme. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until cauliflower is fork-tender, about 10-15 minutes.
  • Once tender, pour all contents in the saucepan into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth (if you need more liquid, add a few splashes more of the creamer to the blender). Blend until smooth.
  • Serve the chicken alongside the cauliflower puree and garnish with thyme leaves, if desired. Enjoy!

  • Recipe by Alexandra's Kitchen.