Cold Crab Salad in Citrus Vinaigrette: inspired by the original Canele Salad. The combination of citrus, crab, avocado, hard boiled egg and pine nuts is decadent, refreshing and so good! Not a skinny salad, but as healthy as decadence gets!
My family loves roast meats – roast chicken, prime rib, crackling pork. But salad has always been a bit of an afterthought, thrown together at the last minute with some vague notion of combining random salad leaves with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. That is, until my eldest daughter met a salad she couldn’t resist. It was the Canele Salad (from the original shop set up more than a decade ago, but sadly no longer available) – the combination of citrus, crab, avocado, hard boiled egg and pine nuts was decadent and refreshing.
It was so good that she would return to the restaurant time after time just to eat that salad. And so good that it inspired her to take charge of the family’s salad making department and experiment with other fruit-based vinaigrettes. However this Cold Crab Salad in Citrus Vinaigrette recipe that I’m sharing with you today is still our family’s favourite – always winning honourable mention and often remarked upon in absentia. It is definitely not a skinny salad, but as healthy as decadence comes, and really easy to make in just 15-20 min (Tip: save time by hard-boiling the eggs first because that step takes the longest!)
And by the way, this Cold Crab Salad in Citrus Vinaigrette recipe is one of the featured recipes in our Special Edition Christmas eCookbook launched this month!
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Note: For Special Diets, please read the notes at the bottom for suggested modifications.
Cold Crab Salad in Citrus Vinaigrette Recipe
The combination of citrus, crab, avocado, hard boiled egg and pine nuts is decadent, refreshing and so good! Not a skinny salad, but as healthy as decadence gets!
INGREDIENTS FOR COLD CRAB SALAD IN CITRUS VINAIGRETTE RECIPE (serves 6)
- Mesclun Salad Mix, 250g
- Baby Spinach Leaves, 120g
- Oranges, 2
- Cherry Tomatoes, 10
- Red Onion, 1 Large
- Ripe Avocados, 2 Large
- Eggs, 4
- Pine Nuts, 1 Small Pack
- Premium Canned Crab Meat, 1
- Pimentos in Brine, 3 TBsp
For Citrus Dressing
- Olive Oil, 8 TBsp
- Orange Juice, 2 TBsp
- White Wine Vinegar, 1 TBsp
- Honey, 2-3 TBsp
- Garlic Cloves, 3
- Dijon Mustard, 2 Tsp
PREPARATION FOR COLD CRAB SALAD IN CITRUS VINAIGRETTE RECIPE (10 Min)
- Wash and drain dry the mesclun and baby spinach salad leaves.
- In a lidded jar, add all the citrus dressing ingredients – garlic cloves should be crushed with the flat of a spatula and added whole.
- Peel and cut the 2 oranges into bite-sized chunks
- Wash and slice the cherry tomatoes in half.
- Wash, peel and slice onion into strips.
- Just before serving, slice the avocado in half, then use a large metal spoon to scoop out bite sized chunks of avocado.
COOKING METHOD FOR COLD CRAB SALAD IN CITRUS VINAIGRETTE RECIPE (15 Min)
- Put the eggs in a small pot and fill with water. The water level should be 2 inches above the eggs. Add a pinch of salt, spreading the salt over the eggs. Boil over low heat for about 10 minutes until cooked. Remove the shell and cut the eggs into wedges.
- Add the mesclun, spinach leaves, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts, onions, oranges into a large mixing bowl.
- Put on the lid of the jar, and give it a vigorous shake to emulsify the citrus dressing.
- Add the citrus dressing to the mixing bowl, then toss the salad to ensure it is evenly coated with the dressing.
- Arrange the salad in a large serving bowl.
- Top with crab meat, egg, avocado and pimentos.
- Optional: Add croutons
TOP TIPS FOR COLD CRAB SALAD IN CITRUS VINAIGRETTE RECIPE
- Use the most premium crab meat (colossal crab claw or jumbo lump) you can afford. It makes a huge difference because the more premium it is, the sweeter and more chunky the crab meat. This time I got the crab meat from Hubers for $59 (454g) but usually I like to get the Colossal Crab Claw meat (which is even chunkier!) from Angliss (I have a lobang to get it at staff discount so its very good value for money and cheaper than Hubers! But I have no idea about the retail price).
- Use a lidded jar to mix the salad dressing to save on washing up time.
- Ensure that the eggs are at room temperature before boiling, otherwise the sudden change in temperature may cause the eggs to crack.
- Add a little vinegar to the pot of water when boiling the egg. This prevents the egg from leaking out in case the shell cracks.
- To check if the egg is hardboiled, twirl it on a flat surface; it should rotate on the spot rather than wobble all over.
Suggested Modifications for Special Diets
- Egg-Free: Skip the egg
- Fish-Free: No modifications needed.
- Gluten-Free: Use gluten-free Dijon Mustard.
- Nut-Free: No modifications needed. Pine nuts are seeds rather than nuts. Most people with nut allergies can safely eat pine nuts, unless they also have pine nut allergy.