I’ve known Aunt Esin since my teenage years when we all lived in New York. Just like my Mom, she’s one of the best homecooks I’ve known. And these two are also best friends! Aunt Esin makes some of the best tasting, best looking food and amazingly delicious desserts and baked goodies all worthy of being featured in food magazines or books. I know her Pecan Pie is legendary and she used to make this incredibly luscious White Chocolate Mousse! But what’s really interesting is that in the middle of all these tempting choices somehow she always manages to maintain her normal weight.
Anyway, I’ll stop rambling on and tell you about the little story behind this salad. We get together with Aunt Esin and her family nearly every summer since we have summer houses in the same town, somewhere along the Aegean Coast. During one of these vacations spent together – a time when I had put on some extra weight –  my Aunt Esin came up to me and quietly said “Listen Inci, I’m going to give you a really simple but effective recipe for a salad called ‘fat burning salad.’ You can have this instead of dinner a few evenings a week and of course you’ll have to watch what you eat during the day…I’m sure you’ll see and feel the difference it makes around your wasteline because this is going to help burn the fat around that area.” And then she told me the few simple ingredients, which I will now share with you. The best part is that this turned out to be one of the best tasting salads I’ve ever had! Which means dieting should be no excuse, you can have it anytime!


(For a single serving, as a meal)

  • 1 whole avocado
  • 1 orange
  • Blanched raw almonds, about a handful
  • Sunflower seeds, about one tablespoon
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Extra virgin olive oil or walnut oil, optional
  • Salt and freshly ground blackpepper to taste, optional
  • Romain lettuce, head lettuce, iceberg or any greens of your choice

Step by step method

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  1. Wash and dry greens of your choice. Tear into smaller pieces and place on a serving plate.
  2. Peel and pit avocado and cut into cubes. Scatter on top of greens.
  3. Wash, peel and segment the orange. Squeeze the remaining juices into a bowl and set aside to make a simple dressing.
  4. Finally scatter a handful of blanched almonds and a tablespoonful of sunflower seeds and enjoy!

To make the dressing  pour the orange juice into a small jar with lid, add some apple cider vinegar and a little bit of evoo. Season with salt and pepper, close lid tightly and shake jar to emulsify. Drizzle on salad just before serving. You can store the dressing in the refrigerator for a couple of days for further use.