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Located in the Bay Area, CA, we're a family-owned garden center offering unusual and hard-to-find plants & gifts. Established 1946.

Life is Beautiful Blog

Christmas Dinner Recipes: Citrus Edition

Blaire Benson

Citrus is in season and is a wonderful addition to holiday meals! It is easily incorporated into any course and contains antioxidants, great amounts of vitamin C, iron and even calcium. Enjoy these three citrus-centric recipes from our friends at Kaiser Permanente!

Honey Citrus Broiled Salmon


4 salmon filets, about 6 oz each
3 Tbsp low salt soy sauce
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed navel orange juice
1 Tbsp orange zest
1 1/2 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
1/4 tsp crushed red chili flakes


Combine the marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Reserve 1 Tbsp of the marinade and put the rest into a resealable plastic bag. Add the salmon to the bag, turn to coat and let stand for at least ten minutes. Preheat the broiler.

Coat the broiler rack with cooking spray. Remove the salmon and set aside the marinade in the bag. Broil the salmon for about 4 minutes, and then brush with marinade from the bag. Broil another 4 to 5 minutes until the salmon is just cooked through. Serve the salmon drizzled with the tablespoon of the initially reserved marinade.


Winter Salad with Roasted Beets and Citrus


4 medium beets

3 garlic cloves, unpeeled

1 medium fennel bulb

3 citrus fruit

1 head escarole

1 head radicchio Treviso

½ head radicchio

¼ cup mint leaves

¼ cup tarragon leaves

1/3 cup roasted hazelnuts, chopped

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp Dijon mustard

6 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling on beets

1/8 tsp coarse sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Trim the beets of their tops and scrub clean. Pat beets dry and place cut side down, along with the garlic cloves, on a large rectangle of aluminum foil. Drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Wrap foil tightly, and place the packet on small baking sheet. Roast in oven until beets are tender, about 45 minutes to one hour. Carefully open foil and let cool briefly. When able to handle, use a paper towel to rub the skins off the beets, and cut each beet into eight pieces. Reserve the roasted garlic cloves for the vinaigrette.

For the fennel, trim the green stems and cut the bulb in half through the root. Trim away most of the root. Thinly slice the fennel and reserve in cold water. Drain before using.

For the citrus fruits, cut a little bit off each end, exposing the flesh below. Place the cut side down on a cutting board and trim away the pith and zest by following the contour of the fruit with your knife. Next, cut crosswise into round slices (pop the seeds out if you can) or cut out segments by trimming alongside the inner membranes.

Cut the radicchio into one-inch-wide pieces and tear the escarole into smaller pieces. Pick the mint and tarragon leaves off the stems and wash along with the chicory.

For the vinaigrette, remove the roasted garlic from the cloves and whisk together with the lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, Dijon and olive oil. Season with a three-finger pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper.

Combine all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Start by using about ½ to ¾ of the vinaigrette, adding more to taste. Your clean hands make great salad tongs!


Gingerbread with a Meyer Lemon Glaze


1 2/3 cup flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger (You can substitute 2 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger, if you prefer.)
3/4 tsp salt
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup boiling water
1/2 cup canola oil

2/3 cup sifted confectioner's sugar (I triple the glaze when I double the gingerbread recipe.)
3 Tbsp Meyer lemon juice


Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly oil a 9" square cake pan, then dust with flour.

Shake off excess. (I often double the recipe and use a 13" by 9" pan — the gingerbread is a little thicker and there is more of it to share.) Mix the dry ingredients. Mix in the beaten egg, sugar and molasses. (If using fresh ginger, add it here.) Add oil and boiling water. Stir until smooth. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick stuck in comes out clean. Stir the lemon juice and confectioner's sugar until dissolved. Brush this all over the gingerbread as soon as you remove it from the oven. It will soak in and make a wonderful glaze.