The Salad in Winter (featuring pink celery, persimmons, pear, beet and beluga lentils)

The Salad in Winter (featuring pink celery, persimmons, pear, beet and beluga lentils)

The Salad in Winter (featuring pink celery, persimmons, pear, beet and beluga lentils)

The Salad in Winter

A salad fit for a king (or queen) in winter filled with beets, lentils, pink celery, persimmons, and pears.
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American


for the salad:

  • 1 head leaf lettuce torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 2-3 small roasted beets, sliced
  • 2 fuyu persimmons, sliced into wedges
  • 1/2 red onion sliced, into half-moons
  • 2-3 oz crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 Bosc pear, sliced
  • 2 navel oranges peeled and sliced
  • 1 bunch pink celery, cut into sticks and the leaves, if you have them!
  • 6 oz beluga lentils cooked and cooled

for the dressing:

  • 3-4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon
  • pinch granulated garlic
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


  • Arrange the lettuce on a platter, 2 big plates (if serving as a main) or four small plates. Top with remaining salad ingredients in the order listed above. Set aside.
  • In a jar or bowl, whisk together (I’ll be honest, I actually just used the spoon I scooped the mustard out with) the dressing ingredients until it emulsifies.
  • Drizzle the salad with dressing, serve immediately.


  • Don't have pink celery? Sub regular celery but slice into thin pieces instead of sticks.
  • For a quicker salad, use vacuum-packed pre-cooked, unseasoned beets (or roast your own
  • I used par-cooked beluga lentils I buy in a packet at Target and heated (then cooled) them according to package instructions. You can also start from dried. 
  • Use any vinegarette you'd like, I like balsamic with beets so went with that. 
  • Don't want to use lettuce? Just toss the vegetables and fruit right in with the lentils and use a little less dressing. 
  • I did a sort of easier version of supremeing with the oranges--I cut the peel off with a knife and then sliced the oranges rather than segmenting them. Cutting them into supremes them would make for a prettier presentation if you are so inclined. 
Keyword salad

Long time readers will probably know that I am not the biggest green salad eater. I really despair when my produce delivery, which has taken greater importance thanks to the pandemic, includes multiple types of lettuce. I get the “local only” delivery so I thought I was past getting lettuce but alas, I was not. I normally don’t get the delivery too much in the fall (and I know it’s still fall despite the silly recipe name) or winter because so little is in season in the mid-Atlantic and what is, can often be bought much cheaper at the regular supermarket. It’s a pricy box so when it starts being filled with potatoes and onions, I start skipping. They lured me back in this week with the promise of pink celery though. I posted a picture here of it in all its glory. I had high hopes of making some cooked celery dish hailing from the heyday of celery love over a hundred years ago but I noticed it was already looking sad a day after it arrived so I had to switch gears. Salad it is!


The stalks were thin and tender so I left them long to showcase their pinkness but by all means, cut them to a more reasonable size. I then added in some fruit I had on hand. Some similarly sad looking but still tasty oranges, persimmons I bought at probably my last Trader Joe’s visit for the year, tiny Bosc pears from the same produce delivery, and on impulse, some cooked Beluga (black) lentils. I don’t know if it’s popular to put lentils in green salads but it really worked. It made the salad into more of a meal if you are inclined to meal salads and as a side dish, much more substantial. They hold their shape together beautifully and looked like sprinkles of confetti on the salad. Pink celery has a robust  herby flavor that was great foil for the earthy beets. 

If you don’t have lettuce to use up, I think the salad would be great without it, just toss the vegetables and fruit right in with the lentils and use a little less dressing. Or use all the dressing. I don’t judge. 

It really was the best kind of salad, even for a green salad hater like me. It’s full of different textures and hardy, yet flavorful bits and bobs. 


An aside: I wanted to mention my Patreon. If you join, you get some bonus recipes each month featuring smoked, tinned, jarred, and otherwise preserved fish and seafood. Even if you aren’t a tinned fish lover like I am, sponsoring the lowest tier is a great way to help offset the costs of hosting this ad-free blog. I’ve been posting my recipes here for sixteen years and have over 2,100 free recipes up; it’s a big, expensive site to run. No pressure, these recipes will always be here, ad-free, recipes on top as always (no scrolling needed!) but if you have enjoyed the site over the years and would like to get some new exclusive recipes in your inbox, consider supporting my Patreon


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