Carpaccio di Arance e Olive Verde


I made this simple salad of blood oranges, green olives and olive oil for a snack the other day and it was so beautiful that I couldn’t help but take photos of it. I’ve had the photos posted on Flickr for a couple of days now but I hadn’t planned on writing about it here. It’s so simple that I really didn’t think of it as a recipe. But, I am absolutely head over heels in love with this photo and the taste of this dish was spectacular. So, even though there isn’t much to it, I’ve decided this is definitely a recipe worth sharing.

Within a week of arriving on the island, I had received my first Sicilian recipe. We were on a tour bus heading through the countryside towards some destination that completely escapes me now and our tour guide was giving us information about the orange groves that we were driving past. He mentioned that if anyone wanted to pull him aside later, he would share a recipe for a Sicilian orange salad. Of course I grabbed him the first chance I got and scribbled down the recipe on my little yellow notepad. It was a very simple orange salad. The ingredients were only sliced oranges, fresh garlic, fresh parsely, and olive oil. To be honest, I thought it was one of the strangest recipes I’ve ever seen. I grew up in California eating fresh oranges every winter but I had never heard of anyone eating an orange with garlic and olive oil. In fact, we never really did anything with oranges other than peel them by hand and eat them or juice them. But I was completely fascinated by the recipe and the first time I tried oranges paired with olive oil, I was hooked.

Well now I am constantly trying new salads that involve oranges and olive oil and if you’ve been browsing through any other food blogs lately, you might have noticed that lots of other people are exploring this combination as well. If you want something a little more complex than I am giving you today, there are tons of citrus salads floating around the blogosphere right now. And a favorite orange and fennel salad that I tried recently can be found at Food “Blogga.”

But if you are new to eating oranges this way, this recipe is a simple and beautiful way to start:

Blood Orange Carpaccio with Green Olives

Blood orange slices
Green olives (preferably oil cured)
extra virgin olive oil

  1. Peel and section oranges with a sharp knife, leaving the pith and membrane behind. Cut thicker slices in half if desired.
  2. Arrange orange slices on a plate, drizzle with olive oil, then add a sprinkling of coarse salt.
  3. Scatter some green olives over the plate and serve.

And I must thank my friend Aoi for naming this dish after she saw the photos on Flickr πŸ™‚

Update: I was too lazy to type out the instructions myself, but I just found a great blog post about peeling and sectioning oranges with a knife.

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  1. Nicole,

    I’m glad you decided to share this salad recipe with us – it has a stunning color mix and I bet the ingredients are great together.

    I love oranges in my salads, but I have to admit I’m kind of new to this thing – I use to eat them, juice them or bake with them . That was all. πŸ˜€

  2. 2
    Shawnda Says:

    That *is* a gorgeous salad!

  3. 3
    Helene Says:

    the salad looks great. We just had oranges from Sicily and I will try your recipe. ItΒ΄s so colourful.
    Yummy. πŸ™‚

  4. 4
    melanie Says:

    I love Italian cooking and cooking simply yet elegantly–this salad is wonderful–if I cannot get blood pranges Iwill make it with oranges or tangerines and I may substitute black olives–yum–thanks and the photo is gorgeous

  5. Nicole-

    Thank you so much for the “Blogga” reference.

    Your photo is beautiful and I am so enjoying your stories, from 6,000 miles away, that I feel like I’m there.

  6. 6
    Kristen Says:

    I can see why you are in love with that photo. Amazing!

  7. 7
    amanda Says:

    ooo nicole! you know, i’ve never tried olives and oranges together. i bet it’s a great balance between sweet and salty. this is truly a gorgeous photo! definately one to add to the portfolio. the contrast between the brilliant blood oranges and the olive green… mmm.

  8. 8
    Caroline Says:

    Nicole… will you share your secret for removing the orange sections so perfectly and beautifully without any of the pesky white stuff?

  9. 9
    Nic Says:

    Interesting combination, oranges and olives!

  10. 10
    Nicole Says:

    Patricia: Thank you! The one thing I don’t do much with oranges is bake. I should really do more of that!

    Shawnda: Thanks so much πŸ™‚

    Helene: Hope you enjoy it!

    Melanie: I think any kind of sweet citrus would be great! And black olives are definitely good too, I tried it!

    Susan: No problem! I probably wouldn’t have thrown this combo together if I hadn’t tried your salad first! Glad you’re enjoying the stories πŸ™‚

    Kristen: Thank you πŸ™‚

    Amanda: You should definitely give it a try! It’s a new combo for me too and I love it! Thanks for the compliment on the photo!

    Caroline: I just updated the blog post with a link to some great instructions for peeling and sectioning an orange while removing all that pesky white stuff πŸ™‚

    Nic: It’s a perfect combo of sweet and salty!

  11. 11
    Ruby Berry Says:

    Looks Yummy!

  12. 12
    Sandy Says:

    Nicole, this looks really good. I just went to look at your latest food shots and they make my mouth water. Are you a professional photographer?

  13. 13
    Terry B Says:

    You’re right about the photo. It’s gorgeous. And the simplicity of the recipe is a hallmark of so much great European cuisine—taking a handful of perfectly chosen ingredients and combining them in exactly the right way. Deceptively simple, but absolutely delicious.

    As for mixing the orange with garlic and olive oil, pairing sweet and savory ingredients can produce really exciting flavors. I just made a dish with pork chops in a sauce that includes garlic, port wine and prunes. Very nice, if I say so myself.

  14. 14

    What camera do you use?

  15. 15
    cooknkate Says:

    That is gorgeous and I was surprised to see it was nothing but oranges, as a ‘carpaccio’ is usually a raw meat or fish. I kept thinking ‘Where’s the meat?’

    Oranges are doing some amazing things in the blogoshpere now. It’s nice to see

  16. 16
    Nicole Says:

    Ruby: Thanks πŸ™‚

    Sandy: Thanks! But no, I’m far from professional! I’ve never even taken a class but that’s the first thing I’ll do when we return to the states.

    Terry B: Thanks so much! I’m heading over to check out your pork chops now!

    Misslionheart: I use a Canon EOS Digital Rebel (300D).

    Cooknkate: Thanks. It’s more of a mock carpaccio πŸ˜‰

  17. Gorgeous! If I can’t be in Sicily this is the next best thing.
    tanti baci e saluti dolci

  18. 18
    Steph Says:

    Hey Nicole,
    Had to stop bye to say beauuuutiful pic! I will definitely have to bring Chris’ attention to this. And the combination in the recipe–so different. I have been craving olives…hmmm maybe I should try them w/oranges. πŸ™‚ I know my dad would love this recipe–it has everything he loves–shows a lil of his Italian coming out. He said he is waiting for your recipe book!
    Take care!!!

  19. 19
    Nicole Says:

    chocolate lady: Thanks for stopping by! I’ve just recently discovered your site but I’ll be a regular now!

    Steph: Thanks! Tell your Dad I’m working on it πŸ˜‰

  20. 20
    Pearl Says:

    Looks lovely. Glad you decided it was recipe enough to describe. Simple is good.

  21. 21
    Lisa Says:

    That looks so incredibly good; feel like I could reach into the screen and take a bite.

    My mom was Sicilian and I remember her making a salad with oranges and fennel, and olive oil, and salt. So unusual to most people way back then, when I was a kid. I still love the flavors of orange and olive oil together…thank you for this!

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