Bees are buzzing in our local orange trees! There is a distinct smell of early spring in the air, and I’m already dreaming of fresh salads from my tower garden! It’s only the beginning of March and yet, I feel the need to clean everything out, dust off the last remains of winter and look forward to the future! This recipe for an Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette is from a trip I took last year to my old stomping ground, Cal Poly Pomona. They have a great little Farmhouse Store on campus that’s run entirely by students and is open to the public. They have a massive outdoor patio, full of plants to fill your own little outdoor space. If you’ve never been there, and you’re local, you really need to check it out!
You’ll find plenty of freshly grown fruits and vegetables inside the store too. The walls are full of quaint little jams, jelly and different salsas. They have a delicatessen with sandwiches, a spot to bottle your own honey! So cute! You can even grind your own peanuts to make peanut butter. They also sell Cal Poly raised pork and beef products! The day we were there the displays were full of avocados, oranges, strawberries, rainbow chard, beets, red and green leaf lettuce, romanesco, cheddar, green and purple cauliflower, kale and so much more!
Students can use their Meal Points and Bronco Bucks to purchase items, and the store also accepts EBT. It’s very much a “learn by doing” place. Students are involved in every aspect from planting, growing and harvesting produce, to learning about marketing and setting up the displays for the stores. The Farm Store is located just south of Temple Avenue at 4102 South University Drive, Pomona. They are open daily from 10a.m. to 6 p.m. If you get a chance, definitely check it out, and buy some orange juice! You won’t find anything fresher!
After the visit to The Farm Store, I came home with orange juice, fresh oranges, Haas avocados, some red leaf lettuce and a delicious plan. I made a simple salad using the lettuce, segments of the oranges, red onion, walnuts and feta cheese. I topped it with half an avocado and then drizzled a very simple citrus balsamic vinaigrette over the top. It’s a perfect addition to any spring meal, or an easy lunch all by itself. Plus, the vinaigrette can be used as a marinade for fish! Salmon or tilapia would be lovely!
What about you? What are you looking forward to doing this Spring?