As it is now becoming warm out, I have been craving light, summary salads. So when I was in the market and spotted the beautiful fennel, I decided that would make up my next salad.
I actually had never worked with fennel before but see chefs on The Food Network using it all the time. As I recall, these chefs would describe the taste as being similar to licorice, and after having tasted it myself, I definitely agree. Fennel has a very unique and refreshing flavor. It also maintains a nice crunch, which makes for a great salad.
So here is how I made the salad (for either 2 side servings, or 1 entrée serving):
- Juice from 1 lemon
- Extra virgin olive oil (enough so that the lemon juice to oil ratio is 1:2)
- 1 Fennel bulb, sliced very thinly (See Note 1)
- 1 Shallot, diced
- 3 tbsp Fennel fronds, chopped (See Note 2)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- In a bowl add lemon juice. Now slowly pour in the olive oil while whisking to emulsify the dressing.
- Add remaining ingredients and toss
Wow that was easy and yet so good and perfect for a warm spring day! Enjoy!
- You only want to use the bulb portion of the fennel. Some grocery stores, like the one I bought my fennel at, leave the stalks on the fennel. Just cut these off where they attach to the bulb and put aside. Do keep the stalks, though, because we will use the fronds in just a little bit. Now thinly slice the bulb, discarding the tough core.
- What? Your fennel didn’t come with the stalks and fronds? You freak! No, no, do not worry. Most markets sell just the fennel bulbs so you are not really a freak. In place of the fronds, I suggest using flat leaf parsley or dill. If you use dill, add about 2 tbsp (1 tbsp or less, if dried).