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Salmon-Mandarin Orange Salad with Asian Vinaigrette-Coffee Dressing

Who knew that coffee in vegetables could go together? In this Salmon-Mandarin Orange Salad, I tossed together crisp lettuce, refreshing cucumbers, slices of Jersey tomatoes with strips of robust, smoked salmon and citrus-sweet orange segments. I added crackling wonton strips, crunchy nuts and more greens to the mix. The tangy Asian vinaigrette mixed with coffee made the dressing scrumptious. This dressing goes with just about any salad and pairs well with Filipino food. Serve this as an appetizer, a side or a meal in itself. This was inspired by a recipe from the "Passion For Coffee Cookbook" by Patricia McGausland-Gallo (Creative Culinary Works). Serves 2 for a meal, 4 for a side dish.
Course: Appetizer, Fish, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Asian, Filipino
Keyword: Salmon Orange Salad Asian Vinaigrette
Servings: 2 people
Calories: 800kcal


  • 4 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 4 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee or freeze dried coffee
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 6 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup ginger ale
  • 6 to 8 cups fresh lettuce
  • 2 whole cucumbers peeled, seeded, sliced
  • 2 whole large salad tomatoes sliced
  • 1 cup sliced fresh asparagus blanched; cut into 2-inch length pieces
  • 8 ounces smoked salmon sliced thin, into 2-inch length strips
  • 1 cup orange segments
  • 1/2 cup fried wonton strips from Chinese take-out; or store-bought
  • 1/3 cup macadamia nuts or use other nuts preferred
  • 2 stalks scallions chopped; divided, use 1 Tablespoon for dressing, the rest to sprinkle


  • Prepare the Asian vinaigrette by mixing together all ingredients in a non reactive bowl or jar: rice vinegar, maple syrup, instant coffee (or freeze dried coffee), ginger ale, sea salt, black pepper, sesame oil, vegetable oil and scallions. Cover and shake to blend. Keep refrigerated till ready to use.
  • In a large salad bowl, toss together the lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, asparagus. Arrange the smoked salmon and orange segments on top. Sprinkle the wonton strips and nuts. Garnish with the rest of scallions.
  • Serve the dressing as a side to the salad or pour on the greens at tableside.
  • Cook's comments: Fix the salad a few minutes before the meal so that vegetables are chilled and crisp. This is a forgiving recipe. Add or substitute other salad greens or condiments you prefer.
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Serving: 1g | Calories: 800kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 64g | Saturated Fat: 38g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 2068mg | Potassium: 526mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 421IU | Vitamin C: 50mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 2mg